Arsenal World Cup Semis: RVP, Netherlands See Off Pesky Uruguay To Reach Finals

Quick bit of Admin to start with.  It appears that Robin van Persie has requested to change his squad number for the upcoming season.  If you’ve pre-ordered the new kit, either home or away, your order will be held for shipping until the number change is finalized according to  You can get the details here.  I don’t know if the rumors are true that he’ll take the hallowed #10, but it looks like he’s casting off the #11 shirt.

As we’re all eagerly awaiting the official word on Laurent Koscielny, whether you’re a smiling cookie or a frowny-face about the signing, well…we’re still waiting.  It does appear as if the deal is completed though as Koscielny’s previous side, Lorient, have already snagged a replacement for him and made that official announcement on their website.  Also, according to our very good friends over at Young Guns, Koscielny has even had a bit of a leg stretch with the Arsenal Youth lads.  So, my hunch is we should hear something definitive soon from the on Mr. Koscielny.

Lastly, you’re probably already aware of this, but do mark the calendar for Arsenal’s opening preseason friendly at Barnet on the 17th.  With Nicklas Bendtner still nursing his hammy, we might see a good bit of new man Marouane Chamakh on the day.

Right.  Nibbly bits out of the way then.

The Netherlands v Uruguay for a trip to the Finals of the 2010 World Cup.  First off, I feel bad for Diego Forlan.  He has singlehandedly carried Uruguay in this tournament and played brilliantly.  Secondly, given the way Uruguay got to the Semis to begin with, and the fact that I am HUP! HUP! for the Netherlands, I’m pleased to see Uruguay go out.  Ex-Arsenal man Gio van Bronckhorst opened the Dutch account on 18 minutes with an absolute rocket from about 25 yards out.  The run of play had stalled somewhat before van Bronckhorst let loose with his left-footed screamer that beat the Uruguayan keeper high to the right corner.  Startling strike, really.  The Oranje had the better of possession and the sharper tests on Uruguay’s net over the first half, but the pesky South Americans were not to be shorn so easily.  Uruguayan Superman Diego Forlan dug into his bag of magical shots once again on 41 minutes and, in almost a replay of the van Bronckhorst goal, let go with a missile from about 25 yards out.  Forlan fired from the top of the box, a left-footed strike that had Dutch keeper Maarten Stekelenburg straining to get a finger on it as it sailed high into the net.

Coming into the second half tied at 1, both sides continued to press their respective attacks.  While the Netherlands’ attack was more prominent, Uruguay kept up the promise of scoring as well.  It was back and forth, with the Dutch having more sustained pressure and Uruguay settling for more one-off chances.  Wesley Sneijder put the Dutch ahead on 70 minutes when he took control of the ball just inside left of the box, made a quick change over to his right foot and slotted home a deflected ball past a diving Fernando Muslera.  There was some question about van Persie being offside or causing interference, but the replay shows he was even with the last man and wasn’t hindering the keeper.  Arjen Robben appeared to put paid to the match just a few minutes later with a tidy header off a volley from Dirk Kuyt.  But yet again, Uruguay would not go quietly into the night.  They launched a spirited response, culminating in a Maximiliano Pereira well placed curler on 90+2 to make it 3-2 at the close.  Uruguay kept fighting for the tying goal, but it would not come.


RVP Again Quiet As Dutch Secure Finals Berth

Call me a conspiracy theorist if you will, but I think something is up in the Dutch locker room.  Something has been agreed to keep the ball away from our man Robin and prevent him from being a productive member of the Oranje attack.  For the second straight match the stat line is woeful: No shots on goal, no shots.  The run of play just doesn’t move through him, he’s rarely been part of the buildup and the wide men aren’t seeking to get him the ball too often.  I could have written this at the beginning of the tournament and used the same paragraph for every match, so consistent has the dearth of opportunity been for van Persie.  Today was no different as the connections again didn’t materialize.  When the Arsenal striker went central, the run of play went wide and Robben was the recipient.  When RVP went wide, Kuyt and Robben looked for Sneijder.  When Robben or Sneijder pushed forward centrally, van Persie was forced farther forward into the box and possession was often kept outside the area.  I’m probably grasping at straws here to explain why my favorite Arsenal player hasn’t produced much as yet, but seriously, I am right at this moment watching today’s match for the 3rd time and it does look like RVP is being frozen out a bit.  My hope is the Dutch have been planning all along to keep van Persie champing at the bit only to unleash him in the Finals.  🙂

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  1. I really enjoyed seeing him play! he only needs goals! but he was amazing! even with an injury to his back! I can t wait to c him play full speed in Arsenal!

  2. I agree about RVP’s starvation of even a decent pass to him, but blimey he has worked hard. Always available, he made a great chance that the ITV commentator said “Oh he’s messed that up” followed by a great shot from schniejder and nearly a goal. RVP played a lovely ball back and the dim wit peter drury didnt have a clue. But yeah if The Netherlands lose the final the blame, in the BRITISH media, will heaped on Van Persies shoulders, even if he doesnt play, Nasty anti Arsenal people,

  3. I think he’s going to have a massive year for The Arsenal. If the Netherlands wins the WC, he’ll be coming off that with huge confidence. If they lose, he’ll come into the season really hungry. He’s probably going to be hungry to make up for last season anyway.

    Fitness will, as always, be the issue. But if we can get him for the bulk of the season, and I think the addition of Chamakh will help in this as RVP won’t have to carry 90 minutes every match, Robin should be looking at 25 goals at least.

  4. Indeed, Jaygooner. Lack of service hasn’t meant lack of positive effort by any means.

  5. Thank you! here I am sitting out here in California wondering what the hell’s going on. I’m phoning my son-in-law in London asking him if I’m the only one who thinks Van Persie’s being ignored. He consistently found space; time and again set up or attempted to set up his team mates. I’m no Schneider fan, or Kuyt for that matter, but I never, until now, considered them self-centered or small minded. Robben? Yeah, I always thought that of him. Bad actor. Self-centered momma’s boy.

  6. So…others think the same too!!:-)….from the first match i thought robin was kinda sidelined on the pitch.cesc would have had a field day for arsenal if he found robin the places he was yesterday…but sneijder would rather give the ball to the onetrick pony robben or the useless kuyt…..they could have been on a rout if they went thru rvp for atleast a few moves…yet rvp has worked hard.the classy layoff for robben who tamely tried to chip the ball in the dying moments says a lot abt both the players and their attitudes.rvp was better placed to take a shot but robben didnt pass to him….selfish methinks..

  7. Absolute farce, I love RvP to bits and it makes me sick seeing how they avoid passing to him. It’s 110% clear that they’re doing it on purpose, avoiding RvP at all costs – he’s been nothing but selfless in his play and sadly the same cant be said for others – Kuyt is atrocious, Robben is cheating scum and Sneijder is just a cock, they did it in the Euro’s to him as well.

  8. I totally agree with you Mike.when i saw Van persie in the centre and waving his hands from Dirt Kuyt the ball was passed to the defence instead of him or to Sneijder or Robben.There is something going on .I think Dutch team is really keeping Van Persie down.Especially Kuyt,Sneijder and Robben.In the last chance of Robben it was Van Persie flick which released him on the flank but he doesn’t did the same favour to Van Persie when he is up against a defender and goal keeper while Persie is running towards the goal.But Persie is giving them all the chances sacrificing his game and his usual killer shots.I think Sneijder ,kuyt and Robben should behave like professional and see to that they get a hold on the cup.They are keeping their deadliest weapon calm and quiet.

    When the going gets tough i think persie will stop sacrifing and fires to get the cup.

  9. I think Van Persie is not being ignored. First off all, do not forget he was out a long time and certainly not 100% fit for the first match. Our easy friendlies against Mexico (played a 2nd team), Hungary (players thought they were on a holiday ;)) and Ghana (also played a weakened team) gave a wrong picture of where Holland and Van Persie stood. I think his form is average at the moment. When he does get a chance, he losses the ball too often.

    Next to that, every Dutch striker has had only a decent record for Holland. Most goals come from midfield/wingers. The Dutch system is different from Arsenal and Van Persie is not the star of the team. I think he is regarded differently at Arsenal.

    Also, Van Persie has less chemistry with Sneijder then with Van der Vaart. When he came in, Robin was more involved. Van Markwijk, our manager, does have faith in him, he will continue to play.

  10. I’ll admit it’s more difficult to see on TV what’s really going on but some of the comments here show total ignorance. While not scoring goals, v Persie is working his socks of for the team, creating space for other players, being a total pest to the opponents defence, always making himself available for his team mates. etc. He is praised by van Marwijk en in the Dutch press for his selfless efforts.
    If you honestly believe a team can make it to the final of a worldcup with 1 player being ignored … well, words fail me.

  11. I don’t believe RvP is ignored by his teammates by purpose neither, of course Robben is a very goal focused player, but with reasons, I thought yesterday RvP fit better into the goal – activities in front of the goal, he has to live with that situation, that he has great team mates around him, and I remember one situation where he was immediately surrounded by three defenders, so I think he is defended very well and that shows a lot of respect by the opponents as well, so credit to him, he is no unknown, no I think yesterday it worked a bit better in front of the goal with the Netherlands, though the goals were rather individual actions, his situation may be difficult within his team, but I don’t think it is by purpose, he just has great teammates, maybe the teamplay could be a bit better with him , maybe, we will see on sunday if it is sufficient, either against Spain or Germany, (and I do hope it will be Germany ❗ ) 😉 😎

  12. I don’t think the likes of sneider or van bommel ignored van persie rather it was a case of 3 players man marking him. I thought van persie was excellent in his link up play yesterday coupled with the fact that Holland was very cautious without De Jong.

  13. me personaly i just love to see his nice ball control … and how he really plays….
    Arsenal the bomb…
    Just wait the new seso

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