Arsenal v Everton Preview: Time to Make our Cannon Roar and Roar

The most significant unimportant points (01/03/23) – Everton game preview

It’s a cliché that all victories worth the same 3 points and all points count the same, but I feel that today we have a vital game to win. Not simply for the cementing our lead on the top of the table, but to show that our shocking defeat 3 and a half weeks ago was merely a statistical outlier, and we are back in business big time.

In today’s preview, I try to organize all relevant information ahead of the early afternoon clash at the Emirates after our surprise defeat at Goodison Park, whether they support our 19th victory of the season or they challenge it. Albeit not all arguments should have equal weight, I hope the sheer surplus of PRO arguments should be a promising sign before the game. Let’s get going!

Signs that Arsenal will WIN the game today:

  • PL TABLE: Arsenal sits on the top, and Everton is the 18th (with the same points as Bournemouth below them, but a much better goal difference).
  • LEAGUE POINTS: we have accumulated 57 points in 24 games, while they collected only 21. That is almost 3x the efficiency (ppg) on our side.
  • HISTORY: Arsenal have won 8 of the last 9 home matches against Everton, including our Pre-season friendly in Baltimore.
  • INJURIES: with Nelson and Smith-Rowe back in training we are without the services of Jesus and Elneny – which Arsenal are quite accustomed to – while Everton will most likely miss Calvert-Lewin, Townsend, Gardner and Patterson. Partey is available again, as we saw him again against Leicester.
  • PL FORM: Arsenal won 9 of our last 13 league games (D2, L2), while Everton lost 8 of their last 12 games (W2, D2) – surprisingly drawing against Manchester City at the Etihad on New Year’s Eve and beating us 25 days ago.
  • SQUAD VALUE: due to the recent run of games and smart investments Arsenal player worth is €803M (according to TransferMarkt), while Everton worth is only €368M, despite having 2 more players in their squad, making us 2.2x more valuable.
  • TRANSFER WINDOW: Arsenal managed to reinforce the team spending 60M on 3 players, two of them have already proved their fee (worth about 75M combined), while Everton lost one of their best players and joint top-scorer Antony Gordon for a decent 40M, but without anybody coming in.
  • FORMATION EXPERIENCE: Arsenal always plays in 4-2-3-1 (sometimes referred as 4-3-3, but I think Odegaard would easily qualify for a CAM), while Everton has tested 10 different formations this season.
  • SMALL DEFENDERS: apart from the huge Yerry Mina, the other defenders are around 183-184, about 3-4 inches below the aerial threat of Saliba and Gabriel. Everton conceded the 2nd most goals from corners.
  • DYCHE vs. ARSENAL: Sean lost 11 of his 16 games against Arsenal; his 0.56 point per match ratio is only superior to his 0.29 PPM vs Manchester City (and on level with Chelsea and Liverpool). We are simply too creative for him.
  • JORGINHO: Partey did train with the rest of the team, but after his knock against City there is some chance that Arteta would keep resting him today, giving the opportunity to our latest signing to win the supporters and show Potter what he is missing for the lousy 12M. The Brazilo-Italian was my MotM twice in our last 3 games, so probably doesn’t need much more evidence, though.
  • REFEREE Michael Oliver is a slimy w@nker, but we won all 3 PL games this season which he officiated, awarded 2 penalties for us, 1 against us, booking Arsenal players 3 times while the opponents got 9 yellow cards in these games. Everton’s statistics with Oliver is 3 points from 2 games, no penalties either way, 4 yellow cards collected as the opponents were booked 5 times.
  • EXPERIENCE AGAINST BUS: Arteta’s Arsenal have struggled against ultra-defensive, bus-parking teams in the past, but this season we have a breakthrough, as both wingers (featuring Trossard), our AM Odegaard as well as striker Nketiah – who is not poaching Eddie any more – are equally dangerous and hard to mark.
  • REVENGE: Our players will increase their already impressive efforts to show that our defeat at Goodison Park was a mere temporary slip, including the awful display. There are not many teams our boys have something to prove against, they did twice against Tottenham, they failed twice against City; as far as I’m concerned only this game is left, maybe our visit to Newcastle in May.
  • EVERTON ON THE ROAD: they have only won once away from home in the Premier League this season (1:2 against bottom-feeding Southampton) all the way back in October, losing six and drawing the other four.
  • STAMINA & BENCH: Everton scored their 6 of their 17 goals in the first half and conceded 14 of the 32 total, indicating a team being more active in the second half. That should suit us having a lot of hungry young players and an overall strong bench, especially if Arteta is willing to utilize it.

Signs that we may lose some point(s) against Everton:

  • BLUEPRINT: the Toffees not only ended our 13-game unbeaten streak (W11, D2), but did so in style. We hardly had any chance and the single goal they scored is flattering us (xG: 2.09). They might know what tactics are effective against Arsenal, but at least they think they know.
  • CURRENT HOME FORM: after our 7 wins out of 7 home games in 2022 we won only one in the next 4. While we are proud that the Emirates is a castle hard to capture, our recent results are a bit disappointing. (Actually, our away form is the deciding factor in the competition so far, as we have now picked up at least seven more points than any other team in the league away from home this season.)
  • MOTIVATION AGAINST LEAGUE LEADERS: it is a known and common phenomenon that bottom clubs often outperform themselves against top teams to demonstrate the little difference in the Premier League. (This is less common in other leagues.) They did it once already.
  • EVERTON vs ARSENAL: historically the Toffees have four wins in their last five clashes with Arsenal, which is one more than they had in their previous 26 matches against us. Maybe we are more predictable than we thought, or their physical style just doesn’t suit us…
  • BOUNCE BACK EFFECT: Teams after the manager is sacked have a tendency to shine in their next game. My guess that’s the players both trying to impress the new coach and/or showing the fans that the previous run of poor forms was the fault of the previous manager, not theirs. Everton won 2 of their 4 games with Dyche already, but that effect should cease at some point.
  • DYCHE vs. ARTETA: albeit the newly appointed manager was trashed by both Wenger (0 point in 7 games) and Emery (0 point in 3 games), against Arteta Sean had W2, D3, L1 in 6 games indicating a draw later today.
  • IWOBI’s FORM: Despite Everton’s poor league performance, Arsenal academy graduate and former gunner Alex Iwobi is in a fine form. In all the 4 games under Dyche Alex was rated above 7, even though he was playing 2 different positions, and not the one perfected under Lampard.

The number of signs that we will win today is 15 (compared to the 6 counter-arguments), but there haven’t been more than 2 goals in an Everton-game since mid-January. So I predict a 2:0 home victory, and reiterate my hope that Eddie Nketiah will find his goal scoring ways.

I hope our title-aspiring campaign continues with a confident win over relegation-pressed Everton, while Manchester City might lose points hosting Newcastle on Saturday, and United when visiting Liverpool on Sunday. I appreciate and support the little teams, but let Goliath win this time.


By Peter Barany

Jorginho and Trossard Are Pulling Arsenal Through

I don’t know about you but I really feel, for the first time, that Arsenal may win the title this season. It’s still a long way to go and hard away games across the North are still to come, but these last five games have told us so much of our young team. They have cojones with bouncebackability.

The away loss against Everton was painful but this will happen once or twice in a season. It was a psychological thing. Then we played our socks off and had poor VARing going against us v a very strong Brentford, followed by an overall deserved loss v Citeh. Just one point from nine was painful and worrying. Would we collapse?

I must say I was worried. The next two games were away v Villa and Foxes. If we would drop points in the first game, we may drop more in the second one. We had to overcome the Villains. The second half in Birmingham tells you all you need to know about the desire, backbone and togetherness of our team. If we are to win the league, this half will be seen as the big turnaround.

We played v well v Leicester too. Arsenal were unlucky not to score more, but this time it was our midfield and defence that made the difference.

Trossard and Jorginho are making a huge difference, adding experience and efficiency to our game at a crucial period. Partey will be back soon but Jorginho offers something that seems to really be what Arteta has been looking for for a long time. We will find out who of the two will start in the next few games.

Leandro has really impressed me with the way he has fitted right into the team. His movement is excellent and so is his first touch and passing. But what has most impressed me is his fearlessness and directness. His assist was a beauty and he clearly was robbed of a goal by a revengeful VAR official. How many of these ‘fouls’ are committed in each game and go unpunished? We took it on the chin and still went on to win the game. Very impressive.

Next up are the Toffees and we have a few scores to settle with them. Come on You Rip Roaring Gunners!

By TotalArsenal

Arsenal v Leicester Away: Preview

A team to nettle (25/02/23) – Leicester City game preview

I’m sure you know the feeling when there is a poor team – either of squad depth or just a weak run of form – but they regularly manage to screw us. As if they were some kind of nemesis or Achilles-tendon to us. Well, this game is not about them. It’s exactly the other way around.

I’m talking about Leicester City. Saying that they are a decent team would be an understatement. And I’m not merely referring to their recent silverware, but even as a mid-table team they have a tendency to beat top-6 clubs. Yet they keep struggling against us. We came up victorious in each of our last 4 games (leading at half time every time), winning 5 out of the 6 games since 2020. And apart from last year’s 4:2,we haven’t conceded more than 1, often even keeping a clean sheet.

Before analyzing their squad and style, let me explain you why I admire them, as I really do. It doesn’t happen to me very often,but I there is a lot to appreciate about them.

  • First, they make many smart investments. They don’t spend big – had only a single signing above 35M – yet they could attract top talent.
  • They have a very capable scouting network. They identify future stars in an early stage of their development, so they can sign them for next to nothing (Mahrez: 500k, Schmeichel: 1.7M, Vardy: 1,2M)
  • Even when they spend big(ger), there is often a huge development potential to that player (Kante: 9M -> 100M, Ndidi: 18M -> 60M, Maddison 25M -> 60M, Söyüncü: 8M -> 45M, etc.)
  • They know they cannot keep all their best and highest performing players, but they don’t sell them all and at the same time. There is a conscious sales and succession planning at the club.
  • Even when they sell their talisman players, they do it at a very high price – well above their market value. (Maguire: 87M, Fofana: 80M, Mahrez: 68M, Chilwell: 50M, Drinkwater 38M)
  • While they scout from all over Europe, they have built a formidable contingent of Belgian players that can support each others’ induction process. Tielemans, Praet, Castagne and Faes are a quartette of fine footballers.
  • They have a historically strong academy (currently struggling both U21 and U18 level) that provide gems to the first team like Harvey Barnes, Ben Chilwell, Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall and others.
  • This also means that they give opportunities to youngsters from their own academy like Daniel Iversen and Luke Thomas.
  • Leicester are loyal to their players, they don’t replace the squad every 3-4 years. Vardy is with them since 2012, Amartey, Mendy and Ndidi are also part of the team for 6-7 years.
  • They are loyal to their managers, too. Apart from the unsuccessful stint of Craig Shakespeare they gave plenty of games and opportunities to their recent coaches/managers in the last 13 years: Eriksson, Pearson, Ranieri, Puel and Rodgers all had their chances for at least a season and a half, which cannot be said of Chelsea or Manchester United.

With all that said, there is strong probability that we will defeat them at the King Power Stadium in a few hours. They seldom make unwise purchases, but putting the Perez craziness aside they managed to purchase Danny Ward for almost 6 times his market value. He was a decent backup to Kasper Schmeichel, but as the main goalkeeper he is the worst in the UK and possibly in the top 5 leagues. For my fellow nerds: Leicester has the the second lowest (worst) xGA-goals stat  at -4.3 (interpret: they conceded 41 goals although the quality of the chances created by the opponents would only amount to 36.7), indicating a very poor goalkeeper, as we could see in the second round at the Emirates back in August. Their attacking department is compensating it by having the highest goals – xG stat in the entire PL, but I don’t think that will be enough today.

We should focus our defensive efforts mostly on Maddison. He is a great player and in a good form. A combination that doesn’t apply to anybody else in East Midlands at this point. Vardy has an outstanding scoring record against Arsenal (11 – more than any other club), but he hasn’t scored since October – his only goal this season – and was only a substitute in their last 3 games. Barnes had some decent games against Brighton, Villa and Tottenham, but he is probably not yet at the level to decide a game of such magnitude. The sad truth is that Leicester hasn’t won a game against the team sitting on the top of the table since 1998 (drawing 2 and losing 16 times). Their previously mentioned winning streak was (unfortunately) ended by Manchester United in the last round, so they are exactly in the opposite situation as Arsenal, as we have just returned to our winning ways after a 3-round detour.

Arteta met Rodgers 7 times already – only against Pep and Klopp did he try his best more – and the 5 wins plus a draw (2.29 points per game on average) is pretty convincing to me. As does our 11 goals scored in the last 4 encounters against the Foxes. We scored 4 goals (with an xG of 2.86) in the last round at Villa Park, so I predict an away win by 0:3 today. Yes, we are playing away from home, but behind only Southampton is Leicester City the least fearsome hosts in the PL, picking up only 12 points (W3. D3, L5) in 11 games.

I will not predict our line-up, even though Mikel might face some decisions at LB, LW and DM positions. Some fans even foresee Trossard starting at LW and Martinelli up front at the expense of Nketiah. However I am willing to take the chance and predict Eddie starting and scoring. As the return (second coming) of Jesus is near, he has to start reminding Arteta and the fans of his qualities if he doesn’t want to stay the substitute but promote himself to competitor.

Let’s have a great game and bring home all the points. COYG!

By Peter Barany

Arsenal v Man City in a Haiku

Big Title Battle

Canons Roar Gooners Galore

ARSEnal Victor!

Fine fellow BKers. I am saying it all through a haiku today. You know the lineup. The boys know what to do.

Have a go at a haiku yourself. The rules are simple: three lines total, five syllables in the first and third lines, and seven syllables in the second line.

Come on You Rip Roaring Gunners.


Arsenal v Brentford: a Close Look at the Bees and How to Smoke them Out

Which team is more in-form? (11/02/23) – Brentford game preview

Two weeks ago we were the most in-form team in England, and probably in Europe as well (competing with Barca and Napoli). Since the 22nd of January we lost both competitive games, our – kind-of-expected away FA Cup fixture in the Etihad against a strong but in-poor-form Manchester City – and our 2nd league defeat in Goodison Park against a generally terrible, but motivated-by-a-new-manager Everton. So we are in a hole right now, and what makes it even worse, we are facing this season’s (other) surprise team Brentford, making our rebound task even more challenging.

There are some mitigating circumstances, though. All losses this season came on the road, and we will host the Bees in the Emirates. In home PL games Arsenal are undefeated, in fact even better: winning 8 and drawing once. And we scored 25 goals in those 9 games (the 0:0 against Newcastle included), which could indicate 2-3 goals tomorrow. Even if we offset that with not finding the back of the net in our last 2 games, that could still be considered positive.

Unfortunately, Brentford could be equipped to withstand that: they have kept a clean sheet in their last 3 matches, as they are undefeated in their last 9, furthermore Brentford have scored at least 2 goals in 7 of their last 8 league games. So this lesser known London derby could be an exciting, rich in goals game between two creative teams (prediction I: 3:2 victory), or a somewhat boring encounter between two cautious teams that cannot afford to lose on Saturday (prediction II: 0:0).

The team news are somewhat symmetric: Brentford will miss their Swedish giant Pontus Jansson, but their 2 other injured fringe players may appear on the bench (Onyeka & Baptiste). Arsenal has also only long term absents: Jesus and Mohamed – I’m so sorry, but that is just plain funny to write – but both Nelson and Smith-Rowe have returned to training, and their withdrawal from the match-day squad facing Everton was more of a precautionary measure.

We haven’t faced Brentford many times, and I can’t remember a single draw. Out of our last 4 encounters Arsenal won 3 and lost only 1, but that was the painful defeat in the opening game of the PL 21/22 season.

Let us see the opposition. Unlike Brighton – another surprise team from the beginning of the alphabet – they don’t sell their best players (since being promoted to the Premier League), but they don’t spend big on reinforcements either.

Ivan Toney is in fine form. He had a marvelous run in November-December when he scored 6 and assisted 1 in the course of only five games. He hasn’t scored since mid-January, but received good ratings from WhoScored nonetheless. Their other in-form player is their #1 David Raya, who is on fire in the last 3 months. The surprisingly short goalkeeper – currently on the brink of the Spanish squad, with several call-ups and 2 international starts under his belt – has excellent reflexes, and is a seasoned distributor of long balls. He was rumored to join us at some point, but it didn’t happen.

By the way, Arsenal affiliations: they have Aaron Hickey in their ranks who was also on the verge of joining us, and he made quite a good impact on the Bees, but had a nasty injury since. And former academy starlet Josh DaSilva is their first-team regular – I expect him to start tomorrow.

Brentford started the season in 4-3-3, but switched to 3-5-2 in September. Actually, they tested this formation against us – and losing by 0:3 is not the greatest reference – but they perfected it in the subsequent months, and defeated Manchestre City and West Ham on the road as well as Liverpool and Bournemouth at home. So my money is on them fielding a back 3 and 2 attackers on Saturday. Master signing from Burnley experienced Ben Mee (1.80) and Pinnock (1.94) will likely start, and I expect Odegaard’s compatriot Ajer to play RCB. The front 2 are obvious: Toney is the main threat, while Mbeumo – after being nominated the worst attacker of the PL last season – starting to make a name for himself.

The game will probably be decided in the middle of the park, where Partey, Xhaka and half Odegaard will likely face DaSilva as well as Danish duo Mathias Jensen and Christian Norgaard, supported by defensive wingbacks Rico Henry and Mads Roerslev Rasmussen – making Brentford the half-equivalent of Wolves but being fixated on Denmark instead of Portugal. Maybe we’ll se Hickey for a while to decide who is the better left back in London (If you are interested in the topic, I have a full research on left backs this season, which will culminate in a major surprise – at least it was for me, but no spoilers today).

Since Brentford will not deploy wingers (recent signings Lewis-Potter and Damsgaard – guess where he is from – are not burning in operational temperature yet), so our fullbacks will have different defensive duties than in previous games, but they will be heavily involved in building attacks, as we’ll need all the support we can get against 6-8 defensive minded players. Therefore I would start Tomiyasu ahead of White, yet I don’t expect Arteta to make a single change from his proven XI. Meaning we’ll start in the familiar 4-2-3-1, with all this year’s (available) signings – apart from Zinchenko – sitting on the bench.

What Arsenal needs to be careful about is Brentford being awarded the third highest number of penalties (5, all scored, making them the team with the most penalty goals), while we are joint bottom with a single kick from the spot. Assuming that VAR denies any favours from the officials, our boys should avoid risky situations.

I expect our boys to be desperate to demonstrate the Everton defeat was just a fluke and bouncing back from setbacks is crucially important for any team chasing the title. Yet Brentford will be a significant obstacle, which we must overcome nevertheless.

By Peter Barany.

Awesome at Home and Super Solid Away: Arsenal’s mid-season Stats are very Impressive

About half way through the season, it is a good moment to have a look at Arsenal and our competitors’ home and away form. It makes some interesting reading!

Happy Mikel is a Happy Arsenal

Home Form:

Arsenal have only played nine times at home but have a near perfect run with eight wins and that one draw against the Oily Barcodes: a total of 25 points. Yet we are second in the ‘PL home table’ as Man City have collected 28 points, but they did so whilst playing two more games. They lost and drew once, scored a whopping 38 goals but also conceded 12 goals in the process (just over one goal a game). The only other team not to have lost at home are the Barcodes. Arsenal have scored 25 times at home and conceded ten goals. Our home form has been great and this should continue to play a big factor in the title race. We scored the second most goals at home with Brentford and Liverpool in third (23 goals). Manchester and Newcastle conceded the least PL goals at home this season: just six (half that of Man City).

Away Form:

Where Arsenal have been second to none is in our away games. Despite our sorry and deserved loss at Goodison Park, Arsenal are doing way better than all other teams on our travels. We played 11 times away, won 8, lost 2 and drew 1 game. This gives us a total points of 25. Second, believe it or not, are the Spudskins with 18 points (11 games). Third are Newcastle, Man City, Brighton and Man United, all with just 17 points from 10 games. Arsenal are also are third best in scoring in away games with 20 goals, Spuds have 19 goals, Newcastle, ManU and Citeh have all scored 15 goals. Quite a surprise, Leicester and Brighton have scored most goals away from home with 21 goals, but the Seagulls have played a game less, so actually have the highest goals per game ratio. Arsenal’s secret is that we have been extremely tight defensively with just seven goals conceded. Only the Barcodes did better with just six goals (but they played a game less away). Citeh only conceded nine goals away but all other competitors are well into double figures already. Arsenal’s Away Goal Difference is an impressive +13, Newcastle are next with +9, and Citeh are are third with a meager +6.

So both home and away forms are pretty impressive, and especially away Arsenal are the bee’s knees. I am glad that we have two more homes games to play (10 in total against 8 more away games), though. The next two games v Brentford and Citeh will be at home and we really need the home crowd to be the 12th man of the team. It is also fair to say that we will face some really tough away opponents in our eight remaining games: Villa and Leicester are seldom or never easy, Fulham will give us a fight, Liverpool, Man City and West Ham will all be tough, and so will be Newcastle and possibly Nottingham Forest if they are fighting for survival at the end of the season. So let’s hope our away form will stay very strong.

We are of course just over half way and there really is all to play for. Great job until now but, on the basis of One Game at a Time (OGAAT), let’s approach every game as a cup final and fight for each and every point.

Come On You Rip Roaring Gunners!!!!!!!!!!

By TotalArsenal.

Eight Observations from Everton v Arsenal

Eight short observations from Everton 1-0 Arsenal:

  1. We didn’t win the battle in midfield but we didn’t lose it either. Partey seemed tired after 30 minutes and the Ode looked under the weather, and their substitutions were no real surprise.
  2. Still the system and tactics worked but the Toffees played at 120% of their ability and our players were almost all below par. Passes and first touches were rushed and sloppy, fifty-fifty balls were lost more than won and we also didn’t have our usual intensity in our play.
  3. We needed to wake up and we somehow couldn’t. I have witnessed this before with Arsenal at Goodison Park during early Saturday kick off. We have one soon away to Villa, so let’s prepare better for that game. But if Partey and Ode were playing not feeling 100% and the home team have had a shot in the arm through new manager Dyche, then it can be hard. I don’t think many clubs would have taken three points of Everton yesterday.
  4. When we attack we have three main weapons. The left flank of Martinelli, the right flank of Saka and the central channel of Eddie and Ode/Granit. Opposition teams know this of course and try to stop us with crowding the wings out. We deal with this very well usually by shifting the play quickly to where there is space. Ode and Xhaka are excellent at this usually but both wer a bit slow. Everton, it should be said, also did a good job in keeping the pitch small and not allowing us much time on the ball.
  5. Our Full Backs were also underwhelming with sloppy passes and not offering as much thrust as usual. The triangles on the left and right lacked energy, creativity and precision, and all above mentioned factors played a role in this. But our full backs can do much better.
  6. The subs did OK, not more and certainly not less. They couldn’t make the difference but we also didn’t drop our level after they came on.
  7. I rate Eddie highly and he is doing a very good job for us. But this was a game for Gab Jesus and I missed him. Jesus’ mobility and dribbling skills, his coming deep into midfield and then turn on his axis would have helped a lot with cracking those defensive lines of Everton.
  8. I think the team tried hard to get something from the game and I can imagine that Arteta was proud of his players. It was not to be and Everton deserved the precious three points. We’ll learn from this defeat and can now look forward to two home games. Come On You Rip Roaring Gunners.

By TotalArsenal

Title Battle 1/19: Everton v Arsenal Lineup and Preview

An early kickoff today at cosy Goodison Park and a big test for the boys. There will be a Dyche of Toffees in front of the Everton goal and the combination of a new manager, a raucous crowd and a nothing to lose attitude could turn this into a huge scrap.

I still remember travelling from Norwich to Liverpool for the early Saturday kick off and losing by an ugly 1-0, best part of twenty years ago. Back then we were also the big favourites. I also remember last season’s encounter at Goodison Park, one of the worst games under Arteta.

Early away kick offs can be bruised babana skins, and I hope the boys will be 100% focused and hungry for today’s first out of 19 battles for the title.

Emile is out and I hope he will be back soon. Same goes for Mo. Partey has a rib issue but will probably play, although Mikel remains circumspect about this. Will we see Jorginho in the famous shirt for the first time?

Furthermore, will Trossard get a start ahead of Martinelli? I doubt it but love to see more of him today.



Ben, Sal, Gab, Zinch


Buk, Ode, Mar/Lean

Edie, Eddie, Edie

Come On You Rip Roaring Gunners!!!!

By TotalArsenal

Balogun, Eddie, Jesus, Trossard: 3-4-1-2 next season?

Before we focus on our next OGAAT battle with Everton, let’s talk about Folarin Balogun and what his return to the Home of Football next season could mean.

Jesus has already proven to be a great Arsenal CF, Eddie is doing a fabulous job right now and Balogun is making all the baguettes stand up with excitement in la douce France this season. We are blessed with three very fine CFs, and when were we last able to say this?

Having watched Folarin a few times on TV now, it’s not a fluke that he is the league’s topscorer. He is fluid and works the defence hard, he has a great ‘nose for a goal’ as the Dutch say (he sniffs chances) and he knows no nerves in front of goal. He can, be target man, play with his back towards goal and loves to come deep too! If he can do this with relatively limited service in the Stade Reims team, just imagine what it could be like when he plays with the likes of Ode, Xhaka and Saka around him!!

Surely, we cannot keep all three of our CFs happy next season if we can only play one at a time? And with Trossard in the team, we cannot simply say we’ll play Jesus on the left and one of Eddie or Balogun through the middle in most of our games.

We could say we effectively have four CFs, two who can play on the left and two who can play on the right. Could we therefore opt for two CFs next season, say in a 3-4-1-2?

Something like this:












Mix and match as per your preferences. I don’t know about you but I quite like this set up for next season. There is also Martinelli and possibly Rice to squeeze into these lineups.

What do you think?

By TotalArsenal

Arsenal Have 19 OGAAT Fences to Overcome: Yee-Haw!

Outside my kitchen window I can see, in the distance, two huge tower cranes operating over a large building project. After another successful transfer window I cannot help thinking of Mikel and Edu being the tower crane operators of our beloved Arsenal. They certainly operate with a great overview whilst having their feet firmly on the ground. They could see the (potential) gaps in our team and knew how to deal with them. I applaud them for the sensibility.

We needed cover for Big Gab and they found a left-footed CB in Kiwior. We needed extra, proven (ideally PL) goal scoring power and Trossard, who can play in a number of attacking roles, can just hit the ground running. An injury to either Ode or Partey would hurt our title chase significantly, so signing Jorginho, who is versatile, experienced and will feel at home among all our Brazilians, is a fine insurance policy by Mikel and Edu. Yes, they were after younger versions initially but their targets were hard to get in the mid-season transfer window. With a much coveted league title at stake Arsenal simply had to act, and we certainly have strengthened defence, midfield and attack with these three signings.

The Boehly boy of the Chavs reminds me of an old neighbour when I was still a boy. They were better off than my family but had no taste. Every time I got a new outside toy or an item of clothing, they would not waste any time before they got it as well, but better, more expensive and of course more showy. The Chavs have been splashing the money with huge desperation to stop the slippery slide into mediocrity. Boehly’s new toy is not giving him any joy so out comes to wallet and splash goes the cash. I wonder how much Potter was involved in all these purchases and how much of a plan there is… other then let’s buy what Arsenal want to buy; let’s snatch it away from them.

So now we have 19 PL battles to go and the next one up is against the Toffees. We are going to count down from now on with OGAAT in mind, and every victory will be celebrated like a cup final. This is a special season. Nobody, absolutely nobody, saw this coming. Every footie pundit had us outside the top-three, many outside the top-four. Let’s get back in the saddle BKers: 19 fences in front of us. Yee-Haw!!

And let’s finish this season as the wonderful Antonin Dvorak does in his Carnival Overture Op.92!

Come On You Rip Roaring Gunners!