Our defensive crisis has been overplayed

We beat Fenerbahçe comfortably on Wednesday evening, thanks to fine performances from Tomas Rosicky, Aaron Ramsey and Theo Walcott.

Mentioning the lack of a credible challenge from our opponents—one of the true juggernauts of Turkish football who are simply having a bad patch at the moment—seems churlish, but it did matter. They were terrible, but we picked them off expertly and Champions League qualification looks assured.

The aforementioned Ramsey was delightful in Istanbul. There was a sureness in his decision-making that ran parallel to his pre-season and pre-injury form. When Ramsey plays well he doesn’t play at light-speed, he recognises space and moves the ball into it, covers the defensive areas intelligently and has to run less. Strong players of this type—ex-Madridista Fernando Redondo is a supreme example—never looked rushed because they predict their opponents moves and navigate away from them without breaking a sweat. Ramsey, although not at this level yet, possesses similar qualities and it is warming to see him making strong steps in the right direction.

A goal will give Ramsey’s and the team’s confidence a lift, as will the excellent scoreline, going into this weekend’s assignment at Fulham, who unlike us, won their opening contest of the season at Sunderland.

There is talk of a defensive crisis at Arsenal. That we only have one central defender currently. That it is not good enough.

Personally I don’t see it. Bacary Sagna is an excellent defender and his best performance last season—away at Stoke (was it?)—was played in this position. We all know he’s not much of an attacking threat, our braided black bull, so we’re not losing anything by playing Carl Jenkinson, who is an excellent crosser of the ball, on the right in a game where we will dominate possession.

I would much rather add a couple of out-and-out strikers to instill more fear up top and take the pressure away from the players behind.

Our defense is flexible and the fact that Per Mertesacker is the only recognised centre-back doesn’t bother me too much. We have excellent depth in both wing-back positions and frankly, I don’t expect us to sign another defender. A defensive midfielder, perhaps—and I think Mathieu Flamini, a player I will welcome back with open arms—can fit this role.

I am much happier with a system that rotates three accomplished central defenders than establishes a first-choice back two with two in reserve. It is more fluid, more adaptable and in the case of injuries or suspension problems, like the ones we are facing now, ensures that whoever plays comes in warm and ready to go, rather than cold after sitting on the bench for two months. I would much rather add a couple of out-and-out strikers to instill more fear up top and take the pressure away from the players behind.

Thus our interest in Karim Benzema intrigues me. If Gareth Bale and Luis Suarez do sign for Real Madrid, as I think they will, it’s a move that seems likely. I would argue that Benzema is an upgrade on both Suarez and Gonzalo Higuain. Giroud looks in top shape at the moment but what he lacks, and will always lack, is that little bit of explosiveness to create something from nothing. Benzema has this and although he has bubbled under the surface at Real, playing support to Cristiano Ronaldo and one of the truly excellent players of this generation, Mesut Özil, he would explode at Arsenal under Arséne Wenger.

If he came in I would be happy with the summer’s dealings. If Angel di Maria, another player much better than his current standing at Madrid suggests, followed I would call us well and truly ready for the season. Even if it did start a week ago.

Back to Fulham though. A win would be nice this weekend, that goes without saying. We don’t need it—I don’t subscribe to talk of needing this or that when it’s blatantly not true—but it would get the ship back on track. Santi Cazorla looked much better in Turkey and he should play a bigger role again at Fulham. He’s a wonderful player, second only to Jack Wilshere (and maybe Laurent Koscielny) in terms of pure footballing potential, and his season starts here.

Finally, a big thank-you to Lefty for kick-starting the blog. I simply haven’t had the energy to keep it going and I don’t think I will be able to write often, but it is nice to have someone to share (or hand over?) the burden to. Bravo, sir.



  1. Didn’t you watch the game against Villa last week?-and I include the time prior to Konscieny’s dismissal in this question!!!

  2. We have one central defender. We’re talking Arsenal, here. No overplaying that, it speaks for itself.

    Bacary Sagna is acceptable at CB, at best. Over the course of a season, it’s a terrible scenario.

  3. Jammathon — This weekend isn’t the course of the season though. It’s one weekend. We’re not going to have one central defender all season.

    I get your point though. If the cover in the wide defensive positions wasn’t as strong I would be much more concerned. The way I see it we have 7 players for four spots and they can be distributed in such a way that injuries won’t be a problem.

    Just my opinion.

    JOEL — What exactly are you referring to here?

  4. all i can say is you are very easily pleased!
    surely one of the roles of a manager is to prepare for the coming season and, at least, try to cover any eventuality. Given that Arsenal have in the past had the longest injury list plus have several injury prone players plus want to compete in all competitions we MUST have a strong squad…..
    if Mertesacker or Giroud were to get injured 10 minutes into the Fulham game we would have no cover.
    you actually think buying Benzema and Flamini means that we can reduce the gap between us and the top clubs given that we beat no one (i don’t count the spurs game where adebeyor lost it) out of the top 5 last year and were so many pionts behind Man Utd….

  5. The ‘7 defenders for 4 spots’ is false because not all of them are suited for all positions in defense (for example, Mertesacker would not be suitable for either wing-back positions’). The team needs an adequate squad with appropriate cover, other teams like Spurs & Liverpool have brought in reinforcements that will improve them vastly. On a simple comparison between squads, Arsenal are less competitive, fact.

  6. @ Andy
    welcome back mate really want us to keep this blog, thanks much..

    “we’re not losing anything by playing Carl Jenkinson, who is an excellent crosser”

    Jenks is an Excellent crosser of the ball???? Really!!!!!!! are you for real?!?!?!?!?!
    And on the issue of Flamini why are we taking him back??? I’ll tell you why because he is FREE and we don’t have to even pay our favored 10 mil£ why are we making 2 steps forward and 100 back????

    This club stinks of deceit, lies and double standards and mostly of Arsene wenger, the words i would like to say i won’t say here

    I just saw in the telegraph that we are loaning Podolski out if that is true and i hope not, time will tell, worst things have happened under wenger’s watch

  7. Andy good to have you back. I agree with you about jenks and his crossing. I think his minus point he is totally one footed and thus a little predictable. I haven’t followed Flamini since he left, but that last season he was looking really good. Good luck to him..

    I would like to understand what’s happening with Podolski? Has he played a full game sine we signed him?

  8. Howdy all,
    Good to see the first amendment alive and kicking below the belt 😉
    Have to disagree though, we are one injury or suspension from being ass-out at the back. Is this anyway to run an airline?
    @Retsub Podolski doesn’t like the gaffer and doesn’t care who knows it.
    This should not however diminish his effectiveness on a football pitch.

  9. Wenger, Please don’t waste money on another overrated French player (BEnzema) , he is mentally soft. Shouldn’t the fact that Real Madrid willing to pay 100million for Bale and ship out Benzema , give us pause?
    He has not scored over a year for the French national team.

    I would only buy Benzema if he cost less that 25 million. He is a talented player , not a lot of speed , good finisher, but has a tendency to drop his head when facing difficult time.
    We really spend the money and go get Suarez if we want to compete for the league. Benzema gives us an easier chance to finish 4th again.

  10. Blimey, this blog is like the London bus system. No posts for yonks then three come at once! Happy days. Must be the start of a new season. I give it until November, when we are down to one fit midielder and we see Steve Bould coming on to fill in at centre back and slipping a disc. Then we will all turn on each other and descend into Lord of the Flies territory once more!

    I must admit Andy i find it hard to be quite so sanguine about our defensive depth. I will be wincing every tackle in tonights game against Full Ham. You can see some merit in adding Flamini to the squad as at least he is quite versatile and can provide cover in midfield and fullback. I think we all agree that he is not the only addition to the squad we need. But maybe we can put the transfer stuff to one side until after 2 September then we can have Lefty do us an analysis of our final squadlet*.

    In the meantime we have two London derbies and the second leg against Fenerbahce at home so there are no excuses for any travel issues (unless we go by bus now to save money for the transfer kitty).

    * Squad: normal size of 2 players per position plus one spare keeper;
    Squadmaxissimo: as per Chelski and Man$ity at least two internationals for every position plus several more who sell programmes or clean the toilets on the weekends but at least can’t play for your rivals
    Squadlet: us, one player per position, Diaby and the cleaning lady.

  11. I started googling way back in may who could we be buying gonzalo higuian,julio cesar and wayne rooney but realize going by history wenger just as no interest in buying world class players,he wants 2 buy d grade players and turn them up to koscienly nd nasri that will take years while da arsenal faithful pay handsome figures for dismal performances,fans allowed wenger 2 get away when he gets away with these lucky matches of fenerbache been strong on paper but a waste of tym on the pitch,also it happen at bayern but they put a slighty weak team but wenger runt his mouth around of how good da team was after that 2-0 win,not forgetting it was bould that got the team defense looking solid while wenger moan about referee decisions and no blame on team, I just feel we (arsenal) have allowed wenger and co to misuse us,so now our main target aim is benzema yet giroud plays more often than him for france,can any1 see how wenger is lowing our standards and expectations at arsenal,I wil be over da moon if wenger does not sign an extension wit us,after the gilberto days and disaterous results and teams we play,his approach to the game defensely which is pathetic and his annoying behaviour.So what if manu and chelski haven’t really bought they are already strong it was seen last week now we should be worried about our selves since that villa defeat,jst imagine what the man’s and london money maniac’s are goin 2 do to us,I can see it already coming from wenger,if we find the right player we will buy him,after sept2,we didn’t find da right player but the squad can challenge for the title,its so sick having 2 hear that crap,just take him psg,I just wish the fans would say we had enough of this bullshit transfer policies its time we stood up against these pigs of directors by protesting!

  12. Gunfest it seems the Rehab you are on isn’t working. How long do you take to conceive that Liverpool won’t sell us Suarez at what ever cost.We annoyed them and they just can’t.Period.The only way of getting him is letting Madrid take him from Liverpool then they loan him to us for 4 years and we totally pay his wages.
    @Benzema. You are surely insulting and a joke.Benzema lit up Ligue 1 while at Lyon and has not retarded at all in Spain.what makes you think he will be a flop.He is better than Higuain and twice better than Giroud.Style up man. On the Fulham game i think am skeptical and can’t underestimate Fulham. It will be foolhardy to think FULHAM will be similar to Fernabache. Though deep in me its bad.But loosing this second straight game will be a blessing in disguise. Am for the first time hoping for a second straight defeat.
    That will be the last stroke to break Wengers resilience to spend.Guys am convinced the lunacy in Wengers mind wont convince him to buy and he is buying timenfor the window to close thats why he said the window must close on commencement of the season. He is expecting Diaby to recover quickly so that he can liken him to a new signing.Diaby is not on a five year contract why can’t he release him for free.Fellaini is there for the taking why can’t we bid for him.He is immense and would surely boost us in set pieces.He is miles better than Ramsey,Wilshere and Arteta our new defensive midfielders as he brings more to our game.Last year we started the season with a defensive minded system and we posted good results in nail biting 1-0 scenarios only for Wenger to fuck it up only to wake up 10 games to end of the season. @ Wilshere i think he is now bordering to stupidity.That if the boss leaves then his future is uncertain. Wilshere is being overrated now here for nothing and he now wants to put the club at ransom and he feels so important.How dare you praise the boss for mediocrity and poor performances.Wilshere was no where when we were humbled and it is him who lost possession for the first and second goals. Every one is tired of wenger except Wilshere. I think he should now be our next target. He is not a Xavi,Fabregas or an Iniesta.English overrated at best.

  13. Delano, you are crazy for believing that Benzema is better than Higuain. I bet you thought Chamkh and Giroud were great strikers too. He is at best slightly more talented than Girourd. It would be a waste of funds to spend it on him. Rather buy Fallini. Unlike you , I do not have to google his games …because I have watched him play with Lyon many times, like I watched Giroud play with Montpellier and Chamakh play with Bordeaux.

    Real Madrid counting on us to be stupid enough to recoup some of the money spent on Bale by selling us Benzema because they know we have to spend.
    the reality is that he does not offer pace or strength up front , he is no better than Walcott. Benzema does not allow us to challenge manure, Chelsea or city. We will still be struggling with Spurs for 4 th .

    Delano , I have not been proven wrong yet on my assessment of the team. Last year I said the best we could hope for was 4th and that’s what happened. I didn’t make our fans jeer Wenger last Saturday. Many fans are tired of the lies , they have been told by Wenger over the years

    my definition of a great striker is not a player who only score a lot tap-ins , but a player who can score a lot of goals in different ways, like a RVP, Aguerro , Rooney, Suarez, these players can affect the game in different ways.
    Especially to succeed in the EPL is different than playing with Real Madrid where you score a lot of easy goals with Ronaldo assuming all the pressure.
    In order to succeed in the EPL , you have to be tough mentally , especially when you play for any of the top 4 teams. A player like Benzema who can’t score for his national team because , he is low on confidence is not made for us!

    I was always felt that Nasri was also an overrated player when he came to us. He is good , but not great. He is now a bench player with Mancity No matter who the manager is!
    That tells me that he was never as great as we thought he was…

  14. Furthermore enough of looking at buying French players for now, France is a country on the decline . If you want to be the best , look at which countries are the strongest right now ? Spain, Germany, Holland, Argentina, Brazil…look at those countries to mine their best and you will succeed !

  15. Why cant we spend 50mill to get Suarez? That we’ve not bid atleast 45mill for him yet is quite absurd to me. And this is the LACK OF AMBITION. Fuck Luis Gustavo and GET SUAREZ.

    I wish all the Arsenal blogs will write the same thing as a header….”GET SUAREZ”. Instead of fans chanting “Spend some fuckin money”….they should rather be chanting “We need the fuckin Suarez”. Goal keeping is not a problem if you are comfortable in the middle and striking positions.

    I say get Fellaini, get Suarez and it would’ve been an excellent job done

    We just need to start adding QUALITY….one by one will do. But, we have failed to strengthen our core. Shitty have been doing so and look where they are. Nobody compares us with shitty anymore, they look at them as a far superior club now.
    Fellaini should’ve been a good start, but now it seems we NEVER wanted him. Doesn’t it seem so now? Who is complaining about our not getting him? Instead now, the bandwagon is on the Newcastle guy…WTF? We need the giant more in my opinion and that should be the start. Any form of panic buying people who were not even on the scouting list means we as a club have FAILED. We have money(in the bank), we had targets….what is happening to the targets? That we put in a pound on top for Suarez shows how much we did not want to do business. And when they came out smoking hot and angry, why have we not gone out with a superior bid (atleast to calm them down)? We have what we want because we have a set of fans who know more than the best managers, but do not unitedly speak out when it matters. Our solidarity is our bane

    Yesterday, it was Benzema, now its Casillas, Di Maria and Oezil…..

    What the fuck are we smoking? What do we want? Are we just realising we have money? If it is a strategy, it better work. There’s nothing that will harm us more than another set of patch-gap buys.
    I must say Mertesacker and Arteta were good panic buys. We especially needed Mertesacker(height) at the time and now, Arsenal no longer look vulnerable from set pieces. However, we cannot afford to be panic buying every two years. This was our best chance to solidify, I hope we can still make good use of these few days.
    On another note, 40mill for Benzema sounds absurd. Is he an upgrade to Higuain? Why pay 40 for this guy? Why couldnt we pay the 25 for Higuain instead of haggling and now claim we want to pay 40 for Benzema? I would happily take Rooney at 40 instead. David Villa might not be the fastest, but he has ACCURACY, same with RVP, Lewandowski and Rooney. Higuain and Benzema are in the same bracket (some speed, not accurate). But, Suarez….what can I say? This guy is like a midfielder that strikes….he can do lots of stuff with the ball, but he has speed and works tirelessly too. We know what he can do. Oezil and DiMaria woud split fans again, but I would prefer DiMaria just because I think we are short on the flanks. If Oezil were to come, then Wilshere, Arteta and Ramsey will have to share DM (this would mean we cannot afford to buy a DM anymore) because Cazorla MUST play. If it were possible, I say grab Oezil and DiMaria, let the selections sort themselves out. Alternatively, we could just add a striker and a very solid DM, because like it or not, we do have a bunch of mad central midfielders waiting to explode right now. If only the coach start utilizing Cazorla more in the middle to get the best out of his strengths.

    Whole lot of speculation, I’m excited, but trusting Wenger is another thing entirely (Just like Podolski/Walcott not playing in the centre). But, Ramsey has been given two good seasons of playing time and look at his form start to pick up(3rd season)…I wouldn’t mind same treatment given to Walcott and we suffer a while, later, we WILL reap cos the guy is damn fast. So, getting those midfielders might actually be better for us cos we have three strikers who could play CF(and bench each other).
    For comparison sake, Negredo, Jovetic are not so much of an upgrade to Giroud. Giroud just needs to step up his game and feel more confident. More than 40 mill for one striker is absurd….we are not that weak.

    Again, I think the Flamini possibility is why he is not going all out to get a DM. Then, why not get Oezil and DiMAria? Stop haggling unless over-inflated…these guys are not ordinary squad players…they are quality.
    30mil for Oezil, 30mul for DiMaria, sign Flamini and let us start there. Three players in, all very useful and money well spent. No matter how wasteful Giroud or Walcott will be, it wont be that bad cos these guys can score the Benzema tap-ins as well.
    Manure are the luckiest bastards with RVP…..I really miss that guy. Single-handedly lifting manure game after game after game. Why cant we bid 50mill for him?

    We NEED ambassadors at the club. We need to re-sign our legendary players. People who were idols to our present crop, who really have nothing doing, but are willing to make it a career with us by helping out anyhow they can. Right now, we have no old player(bar Bould) in any sort of influential capacity.
    Lewandowski claims he had a deal with the club, club says “ur too valuable…..Goetze is already gone, you have to stay”. They rush in and keep the guy quiet. Any thoughts about what would happen here? We have no influential people here. We have no targets, aim or ambitions. I’ve not heard anyone say “Oh, we need to win the UCL in the next 2 years” or anything like this and match it with some signings to show the intent. Look at the way Spurs are going about strengthening, I’m not saying they will win anything, but they have showed their intent with ACTIONS. Manure came for RVP and we could only mutter 24mill, we clearly knew what he was capable of and yet sold him very cheaply and OUR FANS were there to celebrate. So, just like RVP, if we were to sell Cazorla now, fans would justify why we need to sell because he wants more money bla bla bla bla. Then you wonder if anyone really cares for the club. Have Dortmund sold Lewandowski? I bet he is bigger than the club then? Wong. But, they kept him.
    I bet I was the only one shouting when Song was sold, DID WE NEED TO SELL? Now, we may seemingly go back to an old vomit(Flamini). This guy left us when we needed him most and now what lessons do the current players learn from this? That they can walk away and come back anytime to open arms?
    Our situation is frightening.

    Joking about buying RVP, but was very sad to see the way that guy left.

    Will leave with a quote from Terry… “The resurrected blog is like a new signing!”.

    Cheers guys…

  16. Oops.
    “it wont be that bad cos these guys can score the Benzema tap-ins as well.”
    These guys (Oezil and DiMaria) can score goals as well. What I wanted to add is that Giroud or Walcott can do the Benzema tap-ins as well…..point is no need to buy Benzema. Guess, I just jumbled it up.

  17. I agree with you Gunnerboss , let’s not waste money on Benzema if we can not get a top striker let’s fill other positions, like you mentioned Ozil or Khadira and Di Maria would be great signings.
    That’s I am trying to explain if we are going to buy a striker , it has to be a world class player much , much better than we currently have otherwise forget it!

    What we at Arsenal are not average or good players , we need excellent players. As someone smarter than me said” the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result!”

  18. I dont know the sort of fans we have.
    25mill tops for Benzema……
    If I were the coach, I would be willing to go as much as 30 mill for DiMaria or Oezil or we look elsewhere. Fellaini is still available. Why not add significantly to his wages? 25mil for this guy is not bad. Is it because he is playing with Everton? I still think our coach needs a kick in the butt for this one. Fellaini is an asset, an aerial threat, a midfield bully. I dont care what you guys think about heading ability, but I remember when Terry scored a last minute header to beat Barca away and put Chelsea through. Yes, the disadvantage of teams with miniature(Cabaye, Barca) people is that one good corner delivery against them undoes all their passing and dribbling.
    Are there no other good strikers anywhere in world football? Must we buy a magreed striker? Look, the reason magreed is not winning anything is because they dont have good strikers, why would they sell their YOUNG strikers(Benzema and Higuain are young) if not that they are average. Play Walcott CF for a season and I bet you he will be far better than these guys. Just give him a good support cast, thats all. Apart from pace, Giroud is not bad at all. But, our game needs a very pacy striker so we can hurt people on counters….we seem to forget this was how we used to play. This is why DiMaria will be a very welcome idea. Flamimi will be welcome as well unless we can get a quality DM(Fellaini can do this stuff, cant he?). But Flamini would be willing to sit on the bench and be used anywhere as utility….I dont like him, but cant forget how versatile he once was for us(LB,RB, midfield). What is wrong with our fans? Why are we not chanting Rooney? We know he is good, is it because of his wages? Rooney knows the league already, understands the defenders and keepers weak points. Why are we not going for this guy? After all, we sold VP to them. Rooney is English, referees are already used to favouring him, he will be a commercial success…why cant we tap into all these? We MUST not let money keep on being a barrier when we want to go for world class. I bet you if we told Suarez come and get 200k per week, he would’ve thrown in a transfer request since. I guess the reason Rooney prefers Chelsea is because he expects them to maintain his salary scale. Else, I dont see why he is not wearing an Arsenal jersey already.

    Again, some of these players are waiting to us to nail Fener on Tuesday before committing. We will have only 6 days after that match to finalise any deals.

  19. 3-1 away win. You can’t complain about that. Two nice goals from Pod and a great game from Sagna and Mertesacker in defence and Cazorla as well.

  20. Yes Terry, this is the main reason why we did not, were not or have not been complaining until Villa. End of last season was great from Bayern away and of course for them not to lose any of the ten matches after that was no fluke either. This justified why he seemingly wanted to “add only quality” and our patience. The rest is history as they say.
    We know this team so much and they are horribly predictable. Now, Wenger can say “Vermaelen is like a new signing” etc. Team can get complacent when there is a lot at stake and lose another easy cup game etc. We just dont seem to have that stuff of champions and the manager has to show it from himself.
    Wilshere’s rant aside, I would not want him to leave….but like I said earlier he needs help from our “Legends”. He better admit it cos he has failed these past seasons in transfers and players like Hazard would’ve un-mistakenly been Arsenal players if we had not been selling our best so easily and willingly ever since (eg Song and VP). It is the talent+motivation that makes a managers life easy. How more to be motivated than having exceptional talent all around you on the pitch. It just pushes that drive not to be outdone by others a lot more and stimulates real healthy competition on its own.

    I still dont think we need to buy a STRIKER. Podolski has shown again what he can do, Walcott can deputise just like Sagna is doing if need be. So, my conclusion as an avid follower of the team is justified. DiMaria and Fellaini as opposed to Benzema and DiMaria…..add Suarez there and we are certainly going for the EPL.

    Remember in all this, I’ve NEVER talked about our defense. I’ve been telling people time and time again, our defense is NOT our problem.
    Cheers guys to a soothing and refreshing win.

  21. Well said Gunnerboss ! Our choice should be simple enough Di Maria and Fellaini as main target. as you correctly said Cabaye is another small player, we already have Carzola, Ramsey, Arteta, Wilshire all very small it makes it easy to bully us in the middle and vulnerable on set pieces.
    Let’s not compound the stupidity of selling RVP to Manure for 25 million last year by being fleeced this time by Real . We do not have to bite every time someone dangles a French player in front of us.it is has be a cold calculated analysis of what we are lacking, what we need and who could by acquiring them make a huge change in our prospect this season. It is called strategy, we do not seem to have one , otherwise we would have been ready to do our business by the end of last season.

  22. @Terry
    Can’t complain about it?
    Are you kidding? What else would we do here?
    @12th man Hola dutch, How much for the Rooney?

  23. I watched the game on a pretty crappy live stream service. The encouraging things for me were our counter attacking, Giroud’s link up play and a pretty solid defensive performance. I am really pleased that Ramsey is improving after the crap he got last year. He still conceded possession a couple of times that put us in danger but he is finally realising his potential. I love Rosicky as a player but he was quiet yesterday. wilshere looked more dynamic when he came on. Nice goals for Podolski and the way he celebrated and the happiness of the players around him didn’t look like he wants to leave. I hope not because I rate him. Also must give Szcseszny credit for some top saves. Good end to a week that started really badly. Something to build on. Interesting selection choices to be made for the second leg against Fenerbahce. We need to wrap that up with no dramas and ensure we have our strongest team possible available against the spuds.

  24. Guys i think i deserve some credit for being a good analyst.Like i had earlier warned Fulham wont be easy unless we resort to counter attacking football.And i again said Walcott must be the main man in such a system.This came to pass with aplomb.Walcott man of the match for me. Its all about change of tactics and we can beat any Top 4 team in the league.It is Wengers lack of discipline and disrespect for the opposing teams that we always play high line and loose terribly. You can be shocked that until of recent following the major Arsenal exodus United thrived on counter attacking footie against Arsenal and they posted results.Remember we have already beaten Manshitty this season on counter attacking footie. I just hope we fool Spurs by playing a counter attacking game.Otherwise in open play they now have the players to terribly harm us and this must not happen at all if we are to finish above them anyway.

  25. Thanks for the post Andy.

    A very good performance yesterday. Hard to pick a Motm because everyone seemed to contribute and play well. Sagna, what a player. I agree that he’s an awesome defender, and the one match (It was Sunderland away I think, Andy) wasn’t a one off. Some of our attacking play yesterday was very very good. Although we do miss Arteta in the centre of midfield, which leaves us vulnerable to the counter. Loving the 3 rotating midfielders though. Impossible to mark out of the game if done properly .

    Hopefully the win will show some people that last week was a one off, influenced heavily by the ref’s performance (which it won’t), and that we are a better team, with better players, than is generally made out. However, that in no way changes the need to add more quality to the squad.

    I’d love a top class striker, but I’m not sure who really. However, I’m certain we need a backup for Arteta. Whether that is someone like Pogba or Kondogbia, who is a physical presence, and a long term investment, or someone like Cabaye or Flamini, who are capable, experienced backups. I don’t know. If we’re lucky, both. We also need a defender. If not a CB (Sagna 4th choice) then an RB in the 26-28 age range who can take over completely once/if Sagna goes. Leaving Jenkinson and Bellerin to fight it out over the 2nd spot.

    The other option is to get Cabaye/Flamini and get a CB who can also play DM. Like Sakho maybe?

    If we fill these 2 positions (CB/RB and DM) then if we are unable to get a top class striker to complement Giroud’s ability, I hope we get at least a quality winger like DI Maria, or maybe Mata. That allows Podolski to play as striker sometimes. If the winger can play on both wings then Walcott can also play striker.

    So a striker is actually going to be my lowest priority in terms of need. But in terms of adding a fear factor, yes. The problem with Benzema, apart from his agent now saying he won’t leave Real, is that he’s facing trial in January for underage sex. So, that might impact on our season if we get him, and might also explain why Madrid might be willing to sell.

  26. Btw both Benzema and Ribery are accused of having sex with the same call-girl when she was underage.

  27. Good win for the Team BUT we are expected to beat teams like fulham and Fenerbahce. And as well if GOD forbid we loose next week that will be a one off too, its amazing how our expectations have come right down to anything in this transfer window when it promised so much
    Wenger Out

  28. Kel,

    Wenger WILL NOT leave, so learn to be saying constructive things instead. You look silly. I hate reading comments that make it seem like I waste my time.
    Any follower of the team knows what our problem is. We need those quality and experienced players to help the manager with his tactics…this is all. Sometimes, you guys read stuff here and underate it completely because you are used to the person etc.
    What has Cazorla done to you Kel? Do you know we need only three more like him to be reaching the UCL semis yearly? What do you think Bayern is made of? Yet we beat them…..
    You are in my opinion completely underestimating the manager and the players for that matter…because nothing good they seem to do is good for you. You seem to be an example of some trying to become blind. Your last statement will be okay if this man fails to bring in quality or if we fail to qualify for the group stages, right now its completely out of order.

    I say it here again, the quality of Jovetic, Higuain and Negredo with the prices quoted for them is absurd. PSG overpayed ridiculously for Cavani only because they wanted him so bad. Bale money is also crazy, but Magreed is no PSG hence it looks okay to sell for the price. Anyways, I rate Bale higher than Neymar and Ribery…..so, for me Magreed have a good deal because Neymar would’ve cost them loads more. They want to challenge this season and let me put it to you, Ronaldo and Bale(with that last season crazy form) and a by far better combination to Messi and Neymar. The only problem magreed have is a lack of proper CF.
    I already analysed our problems, so too did Shard just above you. Wenger out is not constructive at all.

  29. Oops! Phone errors again
    but magreed is no PSG, hence it looks okay to buy(not sell) for that price…

    are(not and) a by far better combination….

  30. @ GunnerBoss
    Man you and whoso ever can be as constructive as you want that’s your prerogative, if you wasted your time reading my post after some of the stuff you’ve written in the past then cheers to you.
    my tolerance level has gone out the door, the club has not been fear to the fans at all and i feel for them the most. I’v gone away from blaming the players Because as i’v said I believe they are a hard working bunch and when they (Players) come out and say we need more Quality players then that says it for me regardless of what you or i think the players are in the know and if it they didn’t see the need then am sure they would not have said anything.
    They keep feeding us the samethings every season and the question is what has changed in the last 7 seasons????? Yes we have been financially good and that’s fantastic BUT from a footballing sense has these Years been getting better every season?? when last have we finished in the top 2 the teams must improve from season to season not regressed as we have done.

    So even if i find it hard to be happy when i know its only papering over the real issues then it’s the club’s fault for not telling me the truth..

    Again i asked, What has changed???? we are making excuses and going down side roads for everything that Arsenal does, some of the most ridiculous excuses i’v ever heard. May be if you weren’t looking for so much excuses then you might understand…

  31. RVP said we have no ambition, Sagna said same hence the dilly dallying with his renewal. Like I said, this is not the time, things are on the up now, I would’ve loved reading ur perspectives or who we should buy etc instead. Right now, we’re working on DiMaria(if it is true). I’m not taking sides with (u know who), but be realistic for once. We need support for the manager…..people like David Dein need to come back. We were great then….

    Maybe you need to take some time off reading or looking at anything Arsenal like I did. When you come back, you might reason differently. Look at what I’ve written again and see if it doesn’t make sense. Wenger can only fool himself, not you or me. On the basis of the last two wins, he can say he’s not buying and is justified based on the aspirations of the club at the moment. Wenger is not Arsenal, therefore based on this, “Wenger out” is not only ridiculous right now, it could border on what I said before. Most importantly, we are still in the window, aren’t we? Take it easy

    Cheers men

  32. Kel you have well and truly nailed your flag to the post about Wenger and you have been consistent for several years now. I can see where you are coming from and can see your frustrations. Where so far you have been wrong is the extent of our decline. If it is a decline. It certainly is if you compare us to pre-2005 but against most other criteria we have been relatively steady. I am not saying that we should be happy with that but the gloom and doom nightmare scenario of us spiralling down the league has not happened. And this is where we get the polarisation of views. On the one hand there are those who believe that Wenger has lost it, he is totally responsible and he needs to go. Then there is the other camp that says he has been competing on an uneven paying field with the arrival of the Oligarch and the Sheikhs as well as the self imposed financial constraints brought about by the new stadium and he is a genius for keeping us in the top four.
    Then there are fans like me and I assume many others, who believe the truth lies somewhere between the two. You might call that fence sitting but as I am not privy to the inner workings of the club or the murky world of football transfers then I find it more productive to focus on what we do know and see (ie the games and how the team performs).
    For me after watching the last two games you can see there is the basis of a good side. A couple of additions to add strength in depth is vital as our squad looks paper thin. And for that I agree Wenger must take a lot of responsibility.
    Where I do admire Wenger is his loyalty to players based on his belief in them. Ramsey is an example. If Wenger had listened to some of the crap he got last year (and he was playing poorly I agree) he could easily have flogged him back to Cardiff or something. But he has stuck with him and he is starting (fingers crossed, touch wood etc!) to show that he can be a great young player.
    What I do want to see this year is for us to push on and become more competitive again. I am sick of us being out of the running for the league before November. You can’t guarantee trophies but we can and should be more competitive. And I just watched the second half of the Manure Chelski game and both teams were shit. I genuinely don’t think we are that far off them in terms of quality except when it comes to the depth of the squad.
    I may be overly optimistic in your eyes and I may well end up being very wrong but I hope not and I hope we can keep improving, bring in one or two new players to strengthen our squad and still be in the running in the new year. I still think this season could be very interesting, with Liverpool and Spurs looking stronger.
    Terry out!

  33. Terry, do you remember the FA cup final he tested the inexperienced FABs and Denilson against a full squad(with Drogba in tow) Mourinho Chelsea? That Wenger prefers player development at the expense of winning and trophies is not new. I was mad and livid cos he was just resting players for no reason. We normally lose the next match after resting our so-called regulars. They beat us, we were struggling and by the time he decided to add Henry and Ljunberg, it was already late. Back then, there was nothing like trophy drought….. so, yes, one can actually say Arsene Wenger gifted Morinho and Chelsea one of their FA cups because it was on a plater.

    On another note, I loved how all the substitutions were made last game. What I don’t like is(if it is true), him coming out to say “Whoever is bought will not play every game”. Is this not the same mistake Moyes made with Rooney, Gazidis boasting about money etc. It would’ve been safer to get the guy in first, after-all, there is competition already and I’m thinking Walcott is already overplayed. Rosicky was tired…was that not his third game in a row in how many days? Managing the players and their egos is a must for any top manager. That Messi is benched now just shows you how delicate things can be, else the player could suffer from severe burn-out and miss that ALL IMPORTANT world cup place he is fighting tooth and nail for.

  34. “Defensive crisis has been overplayed” – Yes, by our opponent teams usually.

    I am not interested in getting in discussion of may be or possible transfers. ,since arsene might be overplaying the expectation factor to finally find some unknown and special player , who may require 4 or 5 seasons to be what he should be. Will that player be interested to stay at that time , please don’t ask that question now , it is premature to answer now.

    Will Arsene really match up to his expectation in transfers , yes if a hammering happens.

    Is there anyone who still believe that there is 0% chance for that,i doubt even Arsene might not take as 0%.

    Is it too early to say fourth place is like a trophy?. Okay Arsenal team is seriously contending for a trophy this season.

  35. Wow, two goals for Ramsey! Does this mean two famous people will kark it? Sorry Kel, if I had logged on sooner I could have put you on to a site – try WiZiWiG.eu next time – they had quite a few livestream options.

    Great result and Santi looks like he is getting fitter and better and better. Worries over Podolski and Ramsey injuries. Fingers crossed nothing serious. The perils of a small squad laid bare for all to see. Now that we have qualified will we see the ‘special’ signings or is it all a joke?

    At least we don’t play until Sunday.

  36. Terry, Ramsey is not injured….he ran back into the pitch without the referees permission and got his second yellow at about 87mins or so. Think its Wilshere that was being hurt often and on. Let’s hope Poldi’s strain is not so bad.
    Good to see a more confident Ramsey scoring goals too. He does seem to be in all the right places…..not to be over-flogged though, Sunday will be our first real test.

    I watched the match on the ITV news stream, Ian Wright and Lee Dixon seemed to agree that players should’ve been rested for Sunday. But, the thinness of the squad does not permit it…..not if we want to qualify to the groups. Now, the same thing will happen in the league and this is why we don’t seem to be genuine contenders for the EPL. I hope Walcott and co. don’t suffer from serious burn out when it is crunch time….at this rate of exertion, they will. Sanogo and the Japanese are not confident at all……Wenger needs to do loads more about constructing positive mentalities for each player. They need to see themselves as where we see them. Miyaichi did not take anyone for a run at all…..conserving his energy for Sunday? Ridiculous. These guys need to be able to boot up properly whenever demanded to. You don’t need confidence to run, especially when ur already gifted with speed. It shows you the lack of quality or how should I put it?
    Well, anyways…..
    Cheers a to a sweet and deserved win
    Cheers guys

  37. want to say thanks to the lads for making the fans happy they deserve it
    Now on to more serious things (Transfers) So we have qualified for the CL the purse strings will no open and absolutely sure. I asked GunnersBoss A Question Last night and as usual everyone i ask the question to never have an answer, am waiting….

  38. Wenger says he has a team of special players and he won’t buy unless the players is special. For those who always blame the board for our inaction in the transfer market , please just listen to Wenger.
    Good win by the lads today. The game against Spurs will tell us more about our level …

  39. I think we will add to the squad. Wenger has admitted we need to strengthen. As to who we get I will just wait and see. Too many players have been linked with us at one time or another only for nothign to happen. I reckon 95% of the reports are media bullshit and the other 10% is just made up. And that’s not a typo or reflectio of my numeracy abilities!

    What I do like is that we have a core goup of players who finally seem to have some ticker and seem genuinely hungry to play for us. Getting rid of the guys who seemed to be happy to collect the pay checks withour putting in the shift was a necessary first step. I wonder if that is something that is holding Wenger back. He needs to get players who are of sufficient quality but who will also fight for their spot and also also not be a negative influence if they are on the bench or not picked. Oh and not bloody injured all the time too.

    Gunner boss I hope you are right about Ramsey. The commentators I listened to – Alan Smith I think was one, said he went off clutching his groin and I am assuming that wasn’t some kind of post game celebration! I thought Ryo made a decent impact in his short stint – great run and cross that set up Jenkinson for what I was sure would be a goal. And Sanogo linked up well in the move for the second goal. He looks a bit clunky to me though. Time will tell.

  40. Yes, I just saw after double-checking from Terry’s earlier statement, but, u beat me to it.

    Commentator on ITV said he was penalised by the referee….even the commentators carry fake news.

  41. I guess with flamini signing that means no cabaye, o rats another one that GOT away. I knew when newcastle put 20MILL on his head wenger would piss all over it.
    Where are all the blokes on this very same blog who were spouting PISS, saying we would make marquee signings, I guess your still hoping and praying.
    Take Sanogo, Flamini, and who else free wenger can get and PUT that in your pipe and smoke it.
    Its quite shocking how our expectations have gone from 40 mill to 10 to anything, all we want is a signing.
    Am sick to my stomach with wenger and Arsenal, Pathetic

  42. Kel
    Just because we don’t agree. With you it doesn’t mean we are spouting piss, the window isn’t closed yet

    And I for one think Flamini is a pretty good player

  43. Thats a tough draw! But not impossible if we play at our best. Bad news about Podolski – out til November. I hope Wenger bloody well finds that hat and the rabbit is still there. Otherwise it could get ugly.

  44. @Kel we knew deep down that Wenger would spend the money to strengthen this team . We essentially have the same team that struggled to finish 4th last year.
    Those of us who are grounded know that EPL or CL trophies is out of the question under Wenger. After all finishing 4th is our new yearly trophy.

    This a tough draw but we are a bigger club , especially financially than Napoli or Dortmund if we can not beat them then we should not be in the CL.

    Our first big test of the season is this weekend. Talk is cheap , let’s see what we are really made of against the hated enemy!

  45. Guys United is paying 18million pounds for Fellaini we can utterly beat them to this beast of a player.Put 30 on the table and Everton will give him to us. We shall have a balance of 40 to spend on any of the Madrid targets. Realistically we may not get Benzema neither shall we get Ozil .Even Dimaria seems so spacious to say the least.
    If there is surely any scintilla of evidence that there was ever any willingness to buy then Fellaini is worth two players in our midfield.And him and Ramsey?? would surely guarantee us Top 4 at the expense of either Spurs,United or chelsea.
    If we were to play the group stages now in UEFA then am sure we wouldn’t beat any of those sides.I hope Wenger pipes United for Fellaini.

  46. It is so frustrating being an Arsenal fan …we know given the history of Moyes and Everton, they would rather sell Fellaini to anybody but united. It is as if there is nobody with a brain at Arsenal while we haggle over Cabaye a player 10 times better is available…

  47. Gunfest,
    Not picking a fight, and was trying to maintain a watching brief and not comment until after the window closes, but what do you mean when you say we should be beating teams like Dortmund and Napoli?
    Dortmund reached the CL final, play a brand of football we used to boast about and have one of the best young coaches in the world.
    Napolis mix/match team gave our mix/match team the run around at the Emirates only 3 weeks ago, yes it was a friendly, but so was the City game that everyone on heres seems to be using as a barometre for what we can acheive this season.
    Financially, well I just dont know what you mean either, and Im not being condescending to you. If you mean what we turnover or get through deals, then yes we should be beating these two teams, but Dortmund have a proven scouting system and youth system which, unlike ours, has bore fruit. Napoli have also a decent scouting system which saw them sell one of their stars for a huge sum, did they do what Arsenal have done with the sums garnered from Toure, Nasri, Ade, Cesc, Song, Clichy and Van Purstrings sales?? No, they re-invested in quality and actually took one player from under our noses.
    Why do you think Arsenal FC currently has the right, let alone ability to beat these clubs, financially, with ambition or in any other way?

  48. WOW!
    I think DiMaria is not being offered the sort of salary package needed for a swift change of mind, destination etc.

    I guess we should say goodbye to this one as well.

    Heard pool is going for Iarmolenko…..he is a very good player. It seems Wenger does not want to buy anything similar to what he already has…..the problem here is “we are SHORT in numbers”. It seems:
    1. He cannot guarantee playing time and whilst this should be a good thing(rotation), he does not seem to like it.
    2. He still thinks of selling all his young British core just like FABs etc, so he does not want anything to jeopardise their development at all.
    3. He wants to be sure Arteta, the Ox, Vermaelen and Podolski do not stay out of the team for too long when they come back.

    Nevertheless, I think taking a look at shitty and chelsea should give him a clue of how to manage large squads. I don’t know why I still think manure has a rubbish squad(striking department aside).

    Still hoping for DiMaria and no-one else it now seems. Chelsea hijacked a Willian deal they had NOTHING whatsoever to do with….same way they took Mata from us.

    Finally, our bunch just need a bit of mentality boost….someone needs to educate them on STEPPING OUT properly…..so Villa does not happen again. We’ve lost Podolski, who seems to be the only one willing to have a crack at goal from range these days. Sunday will determine how much Wenger really wants to bring anyone else in. The worst thing AVB can do to us is field a weak team and let us have some false confidence, BUT, of course they seem to have loads of ambitions and that will be the last thing on his mind.

  49. I forgot to mention our business with ANY magreed players hangs on Bale. Spurs do not seem to allow any space for anything else.

    Shambo, YES we can beat any team if we are all fit. There’s absolutely no doubt about that hence I talked about mentality. When Sir No Go and Miyaichi came on the last game, we could all see the difference in confidence and class and this resulted in a significantly weaker team. Thus, my problem and anyone else’s problem should be “Can Wenger ensure that the team is not depleted(by injuries) months into the season?”. This should be a concern because anyone coming back will need time to get back to full fitness and form etc.

    I like his confidence, but I still prefer safety first. Money was created to be spent, fans are paying the highest fees in the world and this is the main part that will not justified if we do not do well….assuming we don’t get in adequate back-up. I just hope he wont be waiting for January cos taking second in the group and going out again in the second round of the UCL will not make sense.

  50. Our new striker this season will be Bendtner!!!!!!!!!

    Dream on guys you can wish all you like not one player will come in.
    wenger Out……

  51. Sunday should be really interesting. Spurs have spent a fortune and undoubtably got some very talented players, but they won’t be a team yet

    Gunner boss you are right about Bale, spurs do not want us to get any impetus ahead of Sunday. Even if we got any of the Madrid players its too late for Sunday.

    Bale will be announced after the Spurs game and Madid will use any money they can get from sales to fund the cost

  52. @shambo , I am not sure what you smoked today, but please share some of it too. I am not being condescending either because I know that you understand the concept of irony.
    1-we are the 6th biggest revenue generating football club on this planet, so financially there is no contest with Dortmund and Napoli.

    2- Given our size and club’s history, We should have confidence to come out of even such difficult group. If we are not confident in our chances , is it because we lack quality ?
    If you read my previous post , I have never looked at our club with rose color tainted glasses . I am tired of the excuses! if our manager tell us that we have the quality and that we have special players and we do not need to buy , let’s prove it. Unfortunately I know how this season will end for us.

  53. Spurs have signed Ericksen and am surely believing there is gona be a shift in power in North London. All this is done in the presence of an old senile arrogant idiot who is shameless to resign immediately. It defeats logic for spurs to sign Ericksen at just 11.3 million and yet arsenal scouts are paid to do their job.

  54. Delano

    All Spurs have done so far is spent a lot of cash. Lets see if it does them any good

  55. Quite right Retsub. Am a bit tired of comparing our transfers with Spurs. The only competition is on the pitch. Come on Lefty where’s the preview?!

  56. “Our new striker this season will be Bendtner!!!!!!!!!”
    Okay, you beat me to this one.

  57. Gunfest,
    Being the 6th richest club in the woeld and having great tradition and history means nothing if you dont uphold or practice these values and at leastvTRY to show the AMBITION that falls into line with where Arsenal should be, I know we both know how our season will go but your statement about us being too big or financially dwarfing other clubs has applied every season for the past eight and weve still had cup exits against Bradfords, Blackburns, league home defeats vs wigan and hull, etc,etc.
    How you could witness what the rest of us have these last few years and ever even consider saying Arsenal should beat these teams on financial and historical grounds is completely beyond my comprehension because their is no financial muscle flexed at Arsenal and these teams, even Marseille, are bigger spenders, as for the history, well the problem there is the man that made alot of that history is they current manager and he has no qualms about damaging it as long as he gets to employ his own agenda, which only he now seems to know what this actually is
    Arsenal deserve nothing on merit going into any game.
    Nobody fears Arsenal in the slightest anymore.
    I hope this gets through to you in some small way and that you dont truely believe we have a right to beat the Dortmunds and Napolis of this world because at least one, if not both are in a better place than us right now.
    I cant believe we are going into the derby with the injuries we have sustained, that we are so short on attacking options and any influencial players on the bench. What happens if Walcott or Caz gets injured 20mins into the game?
    Of course we dont want to look at what the scum have done in the market and use this as even more of a reason to get angry, but Christian Ericksson for 12m, and we need at least four players.
    Its a disgrace what has gone on again this summer and their is zero respect for us fans.
    Lets see how tomorrow plays out.

  58. “but Christian Ericksson for 12m, and we need at least four players.
    Its a disgrace what has gone on again this summer and their is zero respect for us fans.
    Lets see how tomorrow plays out.”
    Completely backing this up. Dont know the quality of Erikson, but there has been a buzz about him and this means he is special(atleast to Ajax).

  59. @ Shambo, you mean we will not win the EPL or the champions league this year?! Haven’t you the expression “Wenger knows best”? don’t you believe our manager ,when he says that our team is full of special players? I am really disappointed in you Shambo , I think that you should repent for this blasphemy, you need to go to a quiet room and recite Hale Mary 1000 times! Haha

    Well guys do not despair , there is light a end of this tunnel. I have been there , I know how you feel. The reaction of our fans during and after the Villa’s game , fills me with optimism.
    I cant hardly wait , I hope we don’t add any players now at this late hour. It is like a drug addict , unless he reaches rock bottom , he won’t get the motivation to get better.
    Yes I hopeful and excited because I can feel that what has been simmering for a while with our is about to explode and I am tickled to death!

  60. Somehow, I’m also thinking same Gunfest. We might be calm, but when things go awry again, it will be all hell breaks loose. Then, he might not have the excuse of an open market. I dont know why he doesnt understand that the ONLY thing that will give him any sort of breathing space is to buy players.

    Well, I really really hope things do not reach that level

  61. I really hope we beat Spurs and beat them badly too so wenger will not panic buy and we can go into this season with this squad.

    Go ahead wenger commit suicide with this squad your the best

    wenger out…

  62. I agree with you 2 , Kel and Gunnerboss , the day of reckoning is getting closer, hopefully he doesn’t panic buy. As I predicted many years, WEnger’s end at Arsenal could get very ugly.
    How is it that every fan knows what need, can name you players we should get , all the football commentators have been talking about the type players we need. Is it possible that only our management team is clueless?!
    Wenger , please tell us how Diaby, Bendtner are like new signings, the next few months should be interesting , I have my popcorn ready!

  63. Gunfest,
    This is the thing though bro, throughout all the years that you, kel, gunnerboss, myself and others have been on here shouting our lungs out that we were being led to this eventuality, that we were being taken for mugs and strung along, well I can only speak for myself, but Wenger going out in a blaze of shame isnt what I wanted, or currently want.
    What I wanted was for him and the people responsible for the club to act. They havnt, and aswel as not acting they have blatantly played games with us when it came to ticket selling time.
    The lack of respect they have for the average Arsenal fan is appalling and its time they were repaid in kind.
    Him getting sacked is impossible as he is doing what Kroenke and the board want and it would leave us no better off, wed still be short these ‘ top, top’ players.
    There is no solution in sacking Wenger.
    Iv had enough of it now at this stage that by the time it comes around to watching a game the minute I see Wenger on the line it puts me in bad form.

  64. I get your point Shambo , there is no one at Arsenal with the balls to make the necessary decision.

    Imagine hypothetical scenario , Alex Ferguson after 15 years of winning many trophies decided to follow Wenger’s blueprint and Manure went 4 years without winning a single trophy, Fergie told united fans that finishing 4th was like winning a trophy , if he sold Rooney to Chelsea , who then helps Them win the league that same season.
    In this scenario there wouldn’t be a statue of Fergie left standing outside Old Trafford , Fergie would’ve been lucky if he was not dangling upside down with feet tied to a rope!

  65. @ shambo
    “Him getting sacked is impossible as he is doing what Kroenke and the board want”

    The fans have the power man, we are the only one who can get rid of wenger,
    Booing won’t help because wenger will say it was the ref or an opposing player, and the players don’t deserve that because they are really trying. we have 2 choices at present
    1. Don’t go to any games
    2. And if you can’t take it and decide to go to the game as soon as wenger comes out of the tunnel start singing “wenger out”

    Just to mention we have not heard a single word from IVAN since he made those revelation a while back and i am now totally convinced it was done to sell tickets BUT guess what???? we got caught, again!!
    Where are you Ivan, cat got your tongue or are you thinking of more ways to deceive the fans.

    I hope the boys put in a shift tomorrow and hand spurs a real licking
    Go Arsenal…..
    BUT still
    Wenger Out..

  66. Kel,
    My god man, wait til you here Wenger quotes today giving out about managers spending and that a managers job is to take players and improve them, that he would rather have a squad of 18 young players and that people ( i.e us) have gone mad with consumerism for the sake of it and he will not be pressurised away from.his own ideals.
    More propoganda. Trying to convince our fans that everyone else are corupt and our approach is in line with the morality of football.
    Hes lost it, hes like bobby bouchets mamma, teling us alligators are so angry because ‘ they have all them teeth, and no toothbrush’…’spendin’ monies the devil, y’all’…..ha ha, thats what Im calling the AKBs from now on, the waterboys, ‘ In Arsene we trust’ = ‘my momma sez’…..
    Wenger changes his argument to suit his current scenario all the time and not many kop it. he is saying his ideal squad is 18 just because we are short now and he hasnt bought, but look at all the released and sold players, obviously not a man who wanted a small squad last year or the years before.
    Also his statements are either pure lies on his part or he has himself brainwashed because his ‘ holier than thou ‘ approach with youth and player development only works when the player you developed believes in your approach and stays at the club to the point wheres we reap the benefitss of his early teething years to his now ‘prime’ years.
    This is not the case with you Wenger. You sold Ade, Toure, Clichy, Hleb, Nasri, Fabregas, Song and RvP to either a European or domestic rival and you didnt even try replacing them with like.
    You have truly lost it if you think we are the shortsighted ones and that we dont know how good Wilshere is, how good Cazorla is and that their arent better players than these and that they are special.
    And by the way kel, he not only said that these guys will have improved since last year, groundhog day anyone?.., but he also says ‘ you hope man utd do not have as good a season as last year’…..utter bollox. If they dont then Chelsea or City will.
    The mans lost if he thinks we can compete by hoping these teams will not have good seasons when they are renowned for it. Has he paid attention to the wins by spurs and liverpool.who are both looking very strong.
    Two days left in the market, a massive North London derby ahead and hes reverting to type again. A vote of no confidence should be admitted to the club from AST.
    Its gone on too long now.

  67. I would question how strong both Liverpool and Spurs have looked so far. Both have played teams that you would not expect to be challenging for honours, both have only managed one goal per game, and Spurs have not yet scored from open play. We had a crap start against Villa but have played three great games since so I hope they carry that on tonight against the Enemy! I am cautiously optimistic mixed with a healthy dose of dread! I won’t betaking my blood pressure during the game thats for sure.

  68. True terry but i didnt mean strength as in twenty shots on target or 70% possession but more strength in carving out a win which is so important in this league and something we dont do too often. Theyv not been overly impressive but have maximum points. Theyl have their impressive days aswel no doubt

  69. Great win for Liverpool today. More competition for top 4. Sagna hope Jenkinson is not the weak link in defence.

  70. Top goal, great finish by Giroud and brilliant passes from Caz, Rams and Walcott. Our bench is not exactly one to fill you with confidence!

  71. F#ck that was tense! Fantastic defensive effort. Eleven heroes out there today. Now get the deals done please. Every time one of our players clutches his leg I get a sinking feeling!

  72. I think we did very well today and I’m feeling doubling up on the wings will be a key feature of a lot of our games. Guess Chelsea helped us see some of that defense work out on Friday.
    cheers guys to a very hard fought VICTORY, still hoping for a winger to come in(cos that seems to be our problem now) and maybe another striker.

  73. This win a win for Arsenal and the club. Wenger will not feel any urgency to buy now, it should get interesting…

  74. Great win for the team and the fans now i keep my fingers crossed that wenger dilly dailies
    and we end up with this very squad for the first half of the season…

  75. Great team effort, koscielny ate Soldado without salt!
    Ramseys workrate amd tackling was superb, if he could add a bit more quality when in posession hed be an excellent all rounder but hes not there yet.
    Girouds movemennt and strength was really impressive but he needs a partner, if not a playing one then someone to push him and share the goals.
    Im glad we went ahead, the game favoured us in this regard because had we went behind we had nothing to offer to change things from the bench.
    Shout out to Flamini, a real leader on the field, looks like hes put down a marker for a start next game

  76. well done lads am proud of you. and you did it despite Wenger who chose everyone of you created the team etc bloody idiot

    if only he had blown £70 million on a team of losers who have managed 2 goals both dodgy penalties in 3 games what a clown

    Shambo great summary on a sixpence i agree with all of it, particularly flamini who was quite an influence

  77. Draxler and SNEIJDER? This would really be interesting. This would be marvelous indeed……all SUPER quality. Let DiMaria chew his head off. Draxler is way better

  78. Kel, sometimes I just don’t get you. I for one hope we do get one or two new signings and we kick on and win something. You are so set in your view on one man that you would rather we lose than face a small possibility that you might have to eat (some, not all!) of your words? Sometimes that is how it seems. Why not offer some positives about the performance? Why not give some credit for persevering with young Ramsey? Why not laugh about Wenger’s post match comment that he was only sorry that Flamini didn’t cost 25 million quid?! What about the performance of our supposedly dodgy keeper who was solid the whole game. What about a fantastic defensive effort when we all know that our manager knows nothing about that side of the game?! Look I know where fans are coming from and I fear for us if we get another couple of serious injuries. But can’t you at least bask a little bit in the warmth of a win over the Spuds and give the mantra a break?! At least until after the window slams shut and we lose Cazorla and Koscieleny to injury in the international week…

  79. Ozil for 40 to 50 millions ? Is it what we need ? given we have Carzola, Wilshere , Arteta, Roceski

  80. Ozil(40mill) is confirmed……..
    the Palermo goally on loan confirmed and add Draxler(they will not sell him for less than 40mill) would be mad sweet business.

    I’m thinking we might be paying him(ozil) 150k weekly.

  81. Emiliano Viviano is the keepers name.
    So my question is Who’s #1 ?
    New posting after transfer deadline.
    Personally I’m excited.
    Will we finally win something or am I just in another one of my “Giddy Gooner” moods?

  82. If the keeper is on loan, then Szczesny might maintain number one, but i would like to see Fabianski have a run as well. We cant really seperate them.

  83. @ Terry
    Man we have been here before many many times i can almost write the script
    and am sure you can too if your honest and Yes the team played well and they deserve it and so too the fans BUT wenger noway, for the salary he gets and the power he has he should be doing way better.
    And HE said that this team is good enough not me.
    I Predicted that their will be no significant signings in this summer and am 24 hours from being right and now even if we do sign someone it would be someone that noone else wanted so what has changed??? Nothing???
    Same old Same old BUT don’t worry I’ll write the script when the windows closes

  84. “I Predicted that their will be no significant signings in this summer and am 24 hours from being right and now even if we do sign someone it would be someone that noone else wanted so what has changed???”

    OR SOMEONE NO-ONE THOUGHT THEY COULD GET? Kel, you seem a sad person…..seriously, now is not the time. Come out ONLY when you are proven right, for now it only seems you dont notice any other good thing. We are fourth on the log, we just beat a 100mill plus team with 0pounds spent. Come out and shout when we lose two in a row and we can back you up. For now, it is very unpleasant from you. Try and have some perspective

  85. Apparently Ozil turned down our for 45 million , I say that’s good news. He is not what we need , an a big enforcer In midfield,a defender , at least 1 pacy winger
    To wait to the last day to scramble and get busy is unprofessional

  86. magreed dont mind selling, problem is personal terms, he had said he would only take 200k to leave magreed. But, good thing is he actually wants to join Arsenal, NOT manure, NOT psg.

  87. Ozil it is and very nice.
    A striker would be handy with Podolski out for 12 weeks.
    Maybe I’m asking too much. Anyway I’m asking.
    Don’t we have another 20M left over?
    Come On Ivan make him spend it!

  88. Ozil is a good player , a world class player, but not enough to make us a contender for EPL or CL . Why didn’t put an offer for Fellaini? We need another CB , a DM who can defend on set pieces . There is also talk of getting Demba Ba from Chelsea .
    Isn’t another winger with pace more of an urgent need? There does not seem to be long term planning .
    How high on the table , do you think the signing of Ozil will contribute?

  89. Gun fest
    I think the answer to your question is certainly yes he will contribute. I really think that Flamini will do a good job for us. My concern is at CB where injuries will expose us, similar situation up front but more options

  90. Let me hope Flamini will manage to do a Fellaini kind of thing.But if we play our game based on counter attacks like we did to spurs then we are as good as any one for top three.But if our injured players come back early especially Diaby,Frimpong,Podolski,Chamberlain and Walcott stays fit then we are contenders for the trophy.

  91. Well I decided to take a break from this site till the transfer window closed, rather than just discuss endlessly the possibility of not signing anyone.

    What we have with Özil, is a genuine world class player, choosing to commit the best years of his career to Arsenal.

    Read that, and the script that Arsenal lack ambition, at the very least, needs a tweak, don’t you think?

    I have long held to the belief, oft expressed, and ridiculed for it, that we are a well run club, and have ambition and will work our way towards the top again. The new commercial deals were to be the benchmark for breaking the shackles. In fact, we are one year ahead on that because the deals only kick in next year. The club for the first time!!, told us that they’ll be spending big in this window, and that we’ll make a signing of intent. I believed them, and despite having doubts about how it was working out in practice (I never doubted the desire) I am glad my faith in the club has been vindicated.

    Signing Özil doesn’t make us immediate world beaters, but it takes us a good way towards our ultimate goal. It should turn heads across Europe, and strikers should now be lining up to play for us with a midfield of Özil and Cazorla feeding them.

    Plus, he gives us a genuine attacking threat to break down the park-the-bus teams, who can’t simply mark Cazorla out of the game. Add in Flamini, and we’ve also added some bite to our midfield, and although he might earn a few cards, his propensity to give hard tackles, and even kick players will go a long way to protecting our other players from being kicked out of the game.

    Our squad depth is more than decent, although not ideal. I would have wanted one more striker. But not just anyone. Apparently we bid for Rooney and Benteke yesterday. The backup to that must have been the loan deal for Ba. The fact that Mourinho, with a fantastic Chelsea squad, sees us as rivals, should make some people think again as well.

    If Podolski were fit, I would be comfortable with the squad as it is (although still want another striker of class). Because he and the Ox are out, Giroud becomes very important, although Özil gives us the option of playing theo through the middle as well. We can rest Cazorla at times. We still have Rosicky. As backup! That’s squad depth!

    It’s not perfect, but my word, this is a very good start to the breaking of financial shackles. It’s here. No more selling our players out of financial compulsions. No more not being able to compete for the best players (except against unlimited, unreasonable oil money) We’re working our way to the top. Arsenal are back. If you choose to not see it, it’s on you. But yesterday, the club proved it’s ambition. Now let’s all get together and support them so that they can do more, because there is more to be done.

  92. Will probably get ridiculed for this, but a certain mr bendtnerb has got a lot to prove. I was at the emirates the night he scored 3 against Porto and he was red hot. Should he get a chance he may surprise us

  93. Retsub

    I’d be surprised if he played for us, unless there’s a real emergency injury wise. I think Wenger’s statement about him was basically meant to say he’s not going to play, and Bendtner’s statement is more about how he wanted to leave rather than about how he’s got a lot to prove. Walcott will play as striker, as will Sanogo. Even Akpom might get a chance ahead of Bendtner. That’s my view anyway. Might be totally wrong.

  94. exciting signing, makes it more attractive to watch Arsenal again …. (for me), am delighted 😀 😀 😀

  95. Well it does make a nice change from seeing our best players leaving. Can’t wait to see how Wenger slots Oz and Caz into the side. My guess is Rosicky will be the one to make room which is kind of a shame as I like his guts to have come back from injury as he has done.
    Retsub I love how you remain steadfast in your glass half full approach. I had forgotten about NB52! I hope we don’t get to the point where we actually have to rely on him! How or if Wenger uses him will be interesting. Maybe he could be the worlds most expensive ball boy…he would probably not give us the ball when it’s our throw though.

  96. Ferry
    Was about to start an argument until i realised it was my old mucker Terry.

    had to have my faithfull dog put down today, puts life into perspective, at the end of the day its ust a game

  97. @Retsub
    Four wins on the trot a clean sheet in the derby and a hellacious transfer day.
    Why do you have to F**k it up by dragging deadbeat Bendtner out of the dumpster. He’s right where he belongs because his attitude stinks and everyone is tired of smelling it. Thus no interest in a FREE transfer for “The Greatest Striker That Ever Lived “. I had hoped never to hear his name again much less see him in our side. 🙁

  98. Duno what Kel is waiting for. Like Retsub, I wanna see the script. Damn iphone Terry…..that was a real laugh. I always believe in reasonable doubt and considering he also wanted to bring in Pastore says loads about how he felt business could be done.

    I mentioned the need for HELP for him. Now, we can see why. Suarez rejected us the same way Rooney rejected Chelsea, but people will read it that we are no longer attractive and the longer it would’ve gone on, the worse we would be for it. And this, ladies and gentlemen was my main problem.
    Sneijder rejected Liverpool, he claims they have no ambitions…but wanted to join us. Now, we’ve bought someone for 50mill and paid him 200mil as wages, whenever anyone rejects us again, no one will say its cos of money or ambition.
    Now, Suarez can go rot in Uruguay. I like it with Giroud so far, I really like him. Dont mind B52 as backup at all. He is okay for us. Flamini is still our most important catch so far….he may not have been performing for milan….but, I said it before ” He knows our in and outs completely”. This guy understands us.
    On another note, it will be sad seeing one of Ramsey or Ozil go left for us. I never liked the idea of Cazorla on the left, so I’ll pretend he cannot be there. Ozil is a left footer and Ramsey can run and track back, more importantly Cazorla is MOST effective in the middle. If we have to play to our strenths, then I think a slower Ozil and Cazorla should come inside and give way to Ramsey on the left. This would not solve anything either. I think Ozil, with his accurate crosses should be on the left…while he settles into the team with assist after assist after assist.

    Finally, I think it is wholly satisfying. Now, even if we lose games, there will be no pressure whatsoever. But, competition for that midfield will be fierce. This is exactly how a new signing lifts the team. Cheers everyone to OZIL

  99. ok I eat 30% of humble pie, wenger has really surprised me with this buy, am shocked!!!!!
    Now some of you here will eat me alive, lets see how it goes.

  100. Kel
    No intention of eating you alive, at the end of the day we have a great little community here which has stuck together through thick and thin. A blog doesn’t work without differing opinions. Think deflation has hit your town though 30 per cent????

    Lefty sorry if I spoilt your day will try not to mention b52 again

  101. kel

    Chomp chomp, with a bit of salt 😀

    No man. No worries. Not getting ahead of myself here anyway. There’s a long road to traverse yet, and hopefully the signing of Özil is the start of a new era at Arsenal. I’m just happy that it has arrived. I had faith it would, and the early signs look good.

  102. No worries Kel, I’m equally glad he could atleast bring in someone of superb quality….hence my last analysis.
    Cheers men

  103. Shard,
    Here, here.
    Lets all get behind the team.
    Ozil, what a signing. Will he have a similar effect to Bergkamp, I believe so. Jersey sales are set to soar already, the players and staff are excited and the Emirates will rock next home game, and hopefully it will catch on for all home games now and make our home patch a daunting prospect once again.
    Our fans needed this, of course Shard and likeminded fans deserve credit for hangingsteadfast in support of the regime, but I really believe that it may not have happened without the reaction aftee the villa game either.
    This is what we said we needed. PROVEN InternationL quality. The finished article, not only is he that but he is the best in the world at what he does.
    Forget whether it should have been done years ago, and forget the messy summer and Suarez bids and failure with Gustavo.
    We can now KEEP and ATTRACT the top players.
    I hoped for a CB and striker but hopefully we have goals in us and keep our defensive players fit.
    Cant wait to see Ozil, but to be honest Im looking forward to seeing Flamini again aswel. Bold statement but Flamini is a Captain waiting timo happen. Looks like a guy whos looking to prove something to us.

  104. Not sure about him being captain but I do wonder if at the end of the season that the Flamini transfer might prove to be crucial. I can’s see him playing every game but I can see there being occasions when we need a bit more mongrel in midfield and he can give us that. Something we have lacked for quite a few years. And every side needs someone like that.

    Can’t wait to see Ozil. But am still worried about the forward line with Pod cast aside for a few months and a worrying lack of depth. But Giroud looks indestructible so fingers crossed!

    Kel, we’ll save the other 70% of the humble pie for later in the season!

    All I hope is that we are finally competitive again. You can’t guarantee trophies but I would like us to be in the running in the EPL and in one or more of the cups well into the new year. That would be a big step up from the past few seasons. We then have something to build on. Damn these interlulls. When is the next game?

  105. The next lot of fixtures on paper are easier ones Sunderland, stoke, WBA Swansea. If we can keep Giroud fit we might be able to get some momentum going.

    I really like the Flamini signing, I guess he’s just the water carrier, but all the good sides have a similar player and with him around we winter get bullied too much

  106. I have my reservations about Flaminialthough i was happy when he came on in the dying minutes against Spurs.Remember he is 29+ and literally can’t play a full 90 minutes at the same level.I would feel comfortable in Frimpong being mentored and given real game time to develop into that area as he is the real future.Diaby is made of glass and i think he can be back up.But amidst all that it doesn’t matter for a Defensive midfilder as long as we avoid the trap of High line football. We need to close the gap between our defenders and midfield and we shall have the best defense again.Change of tactics has been the key to our recent success and i hope Wenger doesn’t change a winning formulae.@B52he is at Emirates by default.If it wasn’t fro Mourinhos last minute dirty tricks and jealousy we could have let him go to crystal place and brought in Ba who loved to play for us even before Chelsea got him. B52 is neither bad as we think and i believe he will give us some presence in absence of Giroud as we prepare to go for Suarez in either January or next year. I just hope they don’t even test Europa as i feel Spurs are too good not to be in the Top 4.Liverpool will be forced to sell an unhappy player to mighty gunners who i believe may finish in Top 3.

  107. @ GUNNER

    Your and AKB and a stupid one to boot, go drown yourself in wenger’s piss!!!!!
    this team even with one 40mill player is still short BUT you won’t see that cause your an IDIOT!!!!!

  108. Shambo and Terry (or Ferry if you prefer)

    I would urge caution on Flamini. He’s only played half a game for us, and he obviously wanted to make a statement in that game. Plus it was the NLD, and whatever his faults, he probably gets the significance of that enough to get charged up.

    What I’m saying is, see the Flamini signing for what it was. A way to add depth to the squad. A good DM who can sometimes put the fear of Dennis in opposition players who’d want to play a game called Kickjack more than football, and someone who can also cover at fullback. As such, he was a good signing, and I was happy with it.

    No need to paint him as a saviour/captain just yet. Especially because when he doesn’t live up to that, the opinion will swing to the other extreme. I’m happy we have someone like him. I’m sure he’s a good addition to the squad. Whether he’s more than that remains to be seen.

  109. Caution shmorshon We have won four games on the trot against top top teams, we have bought the third best player on the planet and Abou Diaby is jogging again! We’re unstoppable. I think its time to take my medication. Don’t you hate the international break? I want proper football again. And do I put Ozil straight into my fantasy league team?

  110. Hey uze guys.
    New post is up. It’s an open thread but that’s pretty superfluous in these parts 😉

  111. Wow! Great Blog and interesting conversation every one i was just reading a news about Arsenal youngster Jack Jebb . Do you think this will effect to Arsenal?

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