Honesty day…

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So, I finally caught up with the Wigan game yesterday, I don’t really have too much to add to what Geoff already put… it is truly amazing how one game can cause such a variety of opinion… but that’s what make blogging such a joy I guess!

I was pretty impressed with Song,  I thought Denilson was pretty bad… Nik didn’t really shine up top on his own… and Arshavin’s honeymoon period feels like it’s going to go on for a long long time.

What impressed me about the performance was the desire to score more goals even after the game was buried. I hope that wasn’t a one off, because as a fan… there is nothing more exciting than watching a team hungry to entertain!

There was quality and ingenuity in all of our goals, the innovation in Theo’s goal… Arshavin’s ability to craft out a pass when it would have been easier to give up… Cesc’s hussle for the Silvestre goal… Arshavin’s first time power strike for the third… and Songs fitness to dance through the Wigan defence and cooly finish for the forth.

All goals of quality. You can’t help but worry for Chavski… especially after conceding a few against Bolton!

I’ve also had the chance to read through the Arsene interview with L’quipe. The interview is quite frank and openly honest for once… which was nice! The coach opens up about Adebayor and how is contract wrangle destabilised the club… he also admits that he didn’t ever believe the Flamster would leave… and he talks about how being a prisoner of his own transfer policy… killing kids with adults type stuff again!

I know things are on the up again… and that these kids are starting to look better, but I don’t buy the killing a career thing. Is Arsene sayng that every time an established star leaves, we’ll have to suffer a year or two of average performances while we wait for the next great white hope to reach their potential? Could Song, Denilson and Diaby have learnt their trade off someone like Alonso or Barry? Surely they’d be better players for the experience?

It’s all by the by now… I just don’t think the whole argument is as cut and dry as, ‘The fans said they’d all be crap, but I believed’. We all know that games improve players… we’re just not all comfortable waiting forever to see the benefits. What is good to know… is that the board backed him with money and it was a personal choice not to recruit… not a financial one.

Finally, if you haven’t already read the Arshavin interview, I strongly recommend you do… if not just for this brilliant line.

“I think the quality of life, especially for people with money, is better in Russia than here. Here there are lots of rules and laws. In Russia, if you have money, you can break the law.”

I could have put any MP’s name next to that line and you wouldn’t have flinched! The man’s brutal honesty about all aspects of his life is very refreshing.

Andre Arshavin: Born entertainer, on and off the pitch.

Have a great day Grovers, see you in the comments!

351 Responses to “Honesty day…”

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  1. PDT

    All the goals Bolton scored were from long balls. Does Ade have the brains to stay on side to take advantage of that?

  2. Keyser

    Does anyone actually have the translated version of the Interview, I wouldn’t trust the News of the World to do anything honestly.

  3. PDT

    Arshavin is a gem! I just hope we don’t land in the same hole as the England team on how to play Gerrard and Lampard together!

    Arshavin should always play higher up the field than Cesc.

  4. kelsey

    I have to back Geoff on this ongoing debate about the fact that some of our players just arent good enough.it’s not a rascist thing that song and eboue and to an extent denilson get a lot of stick.obviously the african supporters want their own to succedd as much as some want theo or any other English player to sucede.Song has improved,bedtner has improved,but first and foremost we support the club,and want the best results possible and that can’t be achieved with those still learning and those that aren’t good enough for a team like arsenal.e.g. i don’t rate vela,and i am in the minority,and i reckon he will go out on loan,i maybe well off the mark,but its just my opinion,which may prove to be wrong.

  5. PDT

    Kelsey, I think Vela should have started with Bendtner on Saturday.

    Denilson should have been rested and Cesc should have played deeper from the start.

  6. Pedro

    Here is part of it:

    Interviewed in L’Equipe on Saturday, Arsène Wenger has expressed regret when his Arsenal team has no chance of winning the title of champion of England. “I made a mistake in underestimating the negative effects of last season and lost the title in the last two months, the coach admitted Alsatian. We have lost Hleb, Rosicky on Flamini injury but when I was sure he would stay. And then of Adebayor doubts about a transfer has also been an important factor. After that, just went. ”

    Gunners coach could bring only three times in fifty matches its type team because of all the injuries: “It is not because of training injuries are not muscular. And when we see how Walcott gets treated against Manchester City I think it may eventually hurt the meeting! But these injuries have an advantage. They allowed others, such as Alexandre Song, they show the level. ”

    This season, even if the title of winner of the C1 is still accessible, it leaves in any case “a lot of regret.” “Since our game in Rome in C1, this is fine. This was the trigger. Despite his youth, this team surprises me still. Today, we are unbeaten for 17 matches of Premier League … It is a shame to have such a vacuum passage in the middle. “

  7. Keyser

    I don’t think the formation was that bad, it worked well against Man Citeh for two reasons, one they aren’t good enough to cope with the movement and two they didn’t press us like both Wigan and Villereal did from the start, I didn’t think we were on top form last week, but Fabregas was able to pick them off with two incisive bits of play.

    Both Wigan and Villereal faded after the break because they’d exerted soo much energy in the first half trying to subdue us.

    If Wenger had the option I’m pretty sure we would’ve seen a different formation to begin with.

  8. stonroy

    Morning all. It’s tough when you have a team like the invincibles Kelsey, it’s like remembering when you were in the best shape of your life and always trying to get back to that moment.

  9. Evo in Oz

    gday all,

    just back from the pub and about to hook into a curry dinner.

    PDT – u doubt the Senderos stats, i just cut and paste them from eurosports website….

  10. Keyser

    Pedro – Heh, did you use Google translate for that ? Because I was trying to do that aswell, some of it didn’t make much sense so I left it.

  11. Geoff

    Morning all, nice post Pedro.

    I have to back Kelsey backing me, if you’re good enough play, if you’re not, don’t, this is Arsenal, not Arsene’s academy.

    And if you are going to give youth a chance, then give it to the talented ones like Wilshere, Ramsey and Coquelin.

    And where the fuck was Bischoff is Arsene’s interview, he leaves out all the bits that don’t suit him doesn’t he???

  12. kelsey

    I agree with keyser,we could only put out the players that were available,that we should have strengthened in the summer is an entirely different matter.
    PDT I don’t agree with you,but it’s not an arguement.

  13. Evo in Oz

    oh yeah for sure mate, you definitely can. i would prefer more substantial stats, but thats about the best they can do!

  14. Henrythe14th

    i really hope he doesnt play this 4-5-1 formation on wednesday. I havent been too impressed by it in the last two games and our game against wigan only started changing when we added more strikeforce.

    this is the team he should play


    Sagna Silvestre Kolo Gibbs

    Walcott Denilson Fabregas Nasri

    RVP Ade (or eduardo if available)

  15. Keyser

    Kelsey – I wouldn’t really use that argument because it leaves you open to the inverse which would be you don’t rate them highly enough because of who they are or where they are from.

  16. PDT

    Arsene has double standards on his youth policy. He uses it as an excuse for not signing big players, but then does not play the kids.

  17. nishanth

    Apparently rosicky’s contract ends this season.I was kinda surprised to find that out.I hope we give him a new contract with plenty of clauses regarding the number of matches he plays.

  18. Evo in Oz

    yeah the 4-2-3-1 came into its own in the 2nd half against citeh, my only problem was they forgot to give arshavin the ball, but instead gave it so much to walcott who is still coming back from a injury!

  19. PDT

    Keyser, because he says I want to play the kids, so I won’t sign established players, yet he doesn’t start Vela or Ramsey or some the yourger players like Wilshere, Coquelin, etc.

  20. Henrythe14th

    good point evo but for wednesday andrei wont be there and speed will be essential against those spaniards so lets hope theo does get enough of the ball

  21. nishanth

    “I had a problem at my first school,” he said. “I was sat at the front of the class, right in front of the teacher. We were checking a mathematical problem. My answer was right but I had some marks [doodles] on my paper. The result was good but because of the marks she did not give me the top mark.

    “I said, OK, if you don’t give me the top mark, I will tear the journal that she used to put the marks in. She did not believe so I said, no problem. I tore it in half. And I was thrown out of school.”
    andrei arshavin

  22. Keyser

    Evo in Oz – Do you mean in the Citeh game or the Wigan one ? I think Wigan do have to take some credit, they pushed up well on both the wings and tried to force us back, both Walcott and Arshavin were left tracking back to help the likes of Gibbs out.

  23. Pedro

    I’m not a fan of a 4-5-1 at home… If we’ve got strikers that are fit… we should roll with a 4-4-2.

    I guess the only aspect of a 4-4-2 that could be a worry would be Cesc and how fit he is…

  24. nishanth

    I wouldn’t suggest 4-5-1 even during the away matches.Song and denilson are improving but they are far away from being world class.Their distribution is poor which affects the attackers too.I hope wenger goes back to 4-4-2

  25. Keyser

    PDT – We’ve got a midfield of Walcott, Song, Denilson, Fabregas, Diaby, then Bendtner, Gibbs, Djourou and so on, just beause he didn’t sign Alonso or Barry doesn’t mean he has to play the youth team every game, How young must the players be ?!

    Gibbs, Ramsey and Vela have made 11, 21, 26 appearances respectively, they’ve had plenty of game time already, probably more then they would have if players weren’t injured.

  26. Evo in Oz

    hey keyser – yeah citeh game was a 4-2-3-1 with song and denilson as the 2. didnt work in the first half but after that it worked a treat!

    stonroy – senderos stats are below –

    Senderos Stats 08/09 – AC Milan

    Games : 10
    Starting Line-up : 4
    Substitutions : 6
    Goals : 0
    Penalties : 0
    Yellow Cards : 1
    Red Cards : 0
    Minutes Played : 482

    not playing too many games it seems?

    Henry14th – yep speed for villarreal will be the go, so yep walcott should be in seeing arsewaxin cannae play

  27. nishanth

    Cesc is wasted playing behind the striker.He is our best player and we shoull play him in his best position. Fabregas can play a little deep to balance things

  28. nishanth

    Pedro usually in 4-5-1 only 1 defensive midfielder is delpoyed.The team we played at the beginning of last season was 4-5-1

  29. Pedro

    Nisthant, I think he’s been pretty impressive playing a bit further forward… he’s had 3 assists I think?

    I know what you mean though… most of his success comes from sitting a bit further back…

  30. patthegooner

    Good Post Pedro

    I think the Killing of the youth players is a bit of spin to gee them up.

    After all, why would he have bought Diarra in addition to Gilberto and Flamini who were already ahead in the pecking order of Denilson, Song and Diaby.

    If there was an example of killing off your youth, that would be it.

    I said it yesterday but maybe there is not room in our squad for all three of them. I would like to see one leave and one real class player come in for them to look up to and aim to replace in the starting 11. These boys get in the team too easily.

    Also, and I dont want to dig Wenger too much at the moment, but from a fans perspective, I feel that he should be primarily concerned about the ability of Arsenal Football Club to compete for honours (Each Season) rather than be primarily concerned about the development of three average footballers, of which it is debatable if any of them will ever be talked about in the same sentances as Vieira, Gerrard, Keane, Essien etc.

  31. nishanth

    But then pedro apart from the city game we have struggled.This system is very useful if we able to score an early goal.Otherise there is good chance that we will struggle.

  32. Keyser

    PDT – Sorry just went by Wikipedia, he’s started more regularly in cup games, but I still wouldn’t think it’s something inordinately less than would be expected.

  33. nishanth

    Denilson has had an okay season so far.He struggled at the beginning.But to say he has been an invisble wall is all rubbish.His pass completion rate is good becasuse he only passes backwards and sideways.And often his pass has put on of our players in trouble.But those passes will still be counted as successful.

  34. kenny smith

    Pedro… someone called Asa mailed me about that ticket… whats his blogging name?? i have mailed him back but he has not responded

  35. Pedro

    Nishanth… I think it’s a good system with the right personnel.

    I think we use it against inferior teams and that is when the problems start.

    Against a tricky technical team like Villarreal, it’s probably a good idea to crowd the midfield out.

  36. PDT

    Before anyone starts denigrating Denilson, look at the number of tackles he has made and won. His job is winning the ball back and he does it well.

    …except for the Wigan game….

  37. Pedro

    Kenny, I don’t know what his name is on here… he bought tickets from someone last week though… he might not be at work today though!

  38. ed atom

    Morning all…..good post Pedro. I hate to point out, as I am the worst perpetuator. How ever, it seems most have missed some small detail in paragraph three – line three of this morning’s post. Still, it is a fantastic post regardless!

  39. tomstoned

    Mornin All…Good post Pedro ..

    there will always be ups and downs when youre playing young players..Denilson looks like he need some rest…overall i think every player has gotten far better this season..and im sorry to say tis but i feel Rosicky has to go…and if You look at what Wenger has bought (Nasri) he knew that too,,,,40 million transfer kitty this summer…??? could we believe that…and if Wenger is this honest about some mistakes could there be a change in police and actually beein bought a couple of experienced good players this summer..i think so..and the economic effect,,,,will make players cheaper..no doubt..so it may just happen…


  40. PDT

    Anyone old enough to remember Ali’s rope a dope?

    That’s what we have to do against Villareal. Hang back, absorb all their blows till they are tired and then hit them with stunning combinations which they never see coming…

  41. nishanth

    exactly. alonoso and mascherano work perfectly cos they are simply brilliant.Liverpool got thumped by chelsea but mascherano didn’t feature in that match.Actually i don’t mind ramsey used in that system.

  42. PDT

    G’Morning, Tom!

    It’ll be a shame if Wenger lets Rosicky go. Can you imagine the speed with which we can counterattack with Cesc at the bottom of the diamond, Rosicky and Arshavin on the sides and Theo at the top?

  43. nishanth

    PDT i don’t eactly trust our defense to absorb all the pressure.I suggest that we have a real go at them like we did against roma at home.

  44. nishanth

    We should keep rosicky.He is an experienced player as well.It wasn’t eduardo’s but rosicky’s injury that cos us the league last season.He can also play centrally.

  45. abnet

    mornig evryone
    fine post as allways pedro
    my team for v-real
    eboe / kolo / song / sanga
    theo / den / case / nasri

  46. PDT

    AW played 4-5-1 in our run to the final in 2006. I am pretty sure he will play safe and stick with 4-5-1 in the first half.

    The problem is that with our injury crisis, I am pretty sure that we will concede in the first half, so our away goal advantage will be gone. We have to score at last two, preferably three to make this one safe. I would advocate going with a 4-4-2 from the start. Cesc has had enough competitive minutes out there and should be fit to play in a 4-4-2.

  47. nishanth

    I dont think playing song and denilson is going to give us any extra protection. Senna took one shot after another and there was no one near him to block him

  48. tomstoned

    Mornin PDT !

    i do agree mate,but i dont think we ever will see Rosicky(great player though) back to his full strength..im thinking us keeping Rosicky this far,have been a signal to other players that Our Beloved Arsenal..dont let players down..and the diamond Ure describing PDT would have been an all time great mate 🙂


  49. patthegooner

    We have to give Rosicky the time to try and prove that the injuries are behind him (Once the Injuries are behind him of course).

    The difference now is that we dont need to rely on him, at times I even forgot we had him coming back. If he plays again and can’t refind his form at least we have Arshavin, Nasri, Theo and Vela as options for the two wide berths.

  50. PDT

    Here’s my team :


    Here’s the team he will play :


  51. nishanth

    I really can’t wait for the day when we will have to choose between rosicky,nasri,arshavin,fab,walcott,RVP,vela and wilshere

  52. nishanth

    PDT i am not really sure about this but do you think moving song to CB and silvestre to left back is a good idea.Considering how shaky gibbs looked against wigan.(i am not criticizing gibbs)

  53. abnet

    rosicky is the most verstayle player we have in Arsenal at the moument he can play any where up front and in the center of the pich so we have to give him time. if we can get to the final of CL and if we ahve Rosicky fit i will put him in my staring 11

  54. tomstoned

    not sure about the team Wednesday…

    only thing i know is that the yellow sub is in for a hell of a match…i think we will see Our Beloved Arsenal firin on all cylinders…the European style of playing has always suited Our style better than the premiership…:)

    well two things about the team i would like to see Song together with Toure..as i think the game will be played on the field and not very many high balls….and i would actually use Eboue instead of Gibbs…

  55. tomstoned

    Nish i wish mate..:)

    nope not sarcastic….abit risky maybe..what im getting at is that i would like to see us bringing on a more playing back four..as i honestly believ we will be attacking all night..non stop…:) and maybe just maybe we should take a chance and play 3-5-2…dont know but i actually feel that we should play at Our strength which is quite clearly attacking…


  56. Geoff

    abnet how can you say he’s versatile??? He hasn’t played for a year and a quarter, we worry about how good players will be when they’ve had a fortnight out!

  57. nishanth

    Might work but still too big a gamble to take.Its ages since eboue has played in the defense and then to put him at LB is a bit too risky

  58. PDT

    BTW, looks like the Arsene mantra of “Dont shoot from outside the box” has gotten through to the Arsh. Don’t recollect his taking any shots from distance. Was told that this was his specialty at Zenit. Also hanging about outside the box for rebounds a la Lothar Matthaeus.

  59. PDT

    Agree, Geoff. I would also like to see a defensive coach who can get the Spaniard/Pole, 3 Frenchmen, one Englishman (possibly) and one Ivorian speak in the same language.

    I know I said this in November, but I think Arsene has finally understood that we need to buy big defenders.

  60. tomstoned

    Geoff Mornin mate..

    Sadly i dont think Rosicky will be back and if he is it would take him half a year just to get back to the pace of the game..
    in my eyes Wenger is shrude..we’re all wondering why he bought Bischoff…could it be that Porto was all over this player when fit…he’s fit now and interest starts to show once more…could it be a trade off..???..

    im old enough to remeber the way we got Kenny Sansom…so nothing surpises me anymore…

    is there one decent player in the Porto outfit that we’re after..?? maybe 😉


  61. nishanth

    All of a sudden theo has started shooting from everywhere.Same with nasri.He has scored some stunners for marseille but has rarely taken a shot from outside after coming here

  62. Geoff

    Tom his not that shrewd mate, if Porto were all over him then he’d be good, he’s as average as Song.

    The Kenny Sansom signing was and still is a bit of a mystery to me, I loved Kenny, but in those days we were crying out for a goalscorer and Clive Allen went onto score a gazillion, imagine what he could have done for us, I think that was Terry Neil, or was it Don Howe? I remember being disappointed though.

  63. nishanth

    Does anyone think liverpool have a chance against chelsea tomorrow? I actually think liverpool have this small chance.Carvalho is playing and he is nothing like he was a couple of years back.Anyway i hope it goes to extra time and takes the maximum out of chelsea

  64. Geoff

    I do make you right though, when Bouldy was being interviewed he said Frimpong got a bollocking for shooting from outside the box! Go figure.

  65. tomstoned

    had the same thoughts regarding Allen,was looking forward to get alot of goals,and he did well later on..and i dont think we will ever know the truth about that saga Geoff..and it was Neill if i remember correctly..

    when it comes to Bischoff im clutching at straws Geoff…wondering if there was one good reason to buy him ….grr…

  66. tomstoned


    agree with U mate dont write l’pool off..they proven time after time…o-4 to Milan what happened..and chelski’s defence was crumblig saturday,must leave them worried..

  67. terry

    i would like 2 see d midfield like vela ,nasri ,song ,cess ,walcott.
    coz when nasri plays on d left he is mostly invicible we all saw that in d 1st leg and he is more effective in d centre.

  68. terry

    i would like 2 see d midfield like vela ,nasri ,song ,cess ,walcott.
    coz when nasri plays on d left he is mostly invicible we all saw that in d 1st leg and he is more effective in d centre and vela can support ade as a second striker.

  69. Supergunner07

    @ Nisthant, Gibbs made one mistake in 90 minutes considering that was his 1st start in the prem. Also you dont get more physical team than Wigan apart from Stoke in the prem and Gibbs is 5ft 11ins so he will be fine against Chavski.

  70. Jay2Oh

    Terry is suspended for tomorrow nights game – he will be 100% on saturday. Cant wait to arshavin dance round the little cunt.

  71. Jay2Oh

    Platini is possibly the worst excuse for someone with power within football. All hecan do is moan about the champions league being dominated by us lot. Well the french is shite – moan about them improving you prick.

    Putting the final in rome after countless fuck ups and mistakes by itlain police, not to mention the scummers that are some of the italian fans. Brits cant go to footy match without being attacked!
    It comes to something when fans need a police escort from a football ground to the airport!!!!

    Platini – You are a joke. Anyone see the 5 red cards in the rome derby that game?!!? One for a director!!!

  72. nishanth

    I bet if something like this happens at arsenal or any other english club they will be banned from participating in europe

  73. AR

    Is playing Eboue at left back an option? Gibbs makes me very nervous everytime the ball goes near him (and im talkin Cyganerves).

  74. Pedro

    Howdy… Pat… totally agree with you on Rome… it’s shocking that they always seem to get away with raw violence…

    Imagine if the UK suffered the same problems?

    Plus… all that rubbish about rearranging the tie at short notice… how do they think clubs cope with FA Cup Replays… and we’ve known about the violence issue since before Christmas!

  75. Jay

    I think livo will push Chelsea.. !
    and thats good for us…

    if we get two positive results this week..
    wow, this team would be going strength to strength..

    in saying that i think le boss knows he needs some reinforcements..

    btw – le boss being an economist hah knew teh global crisis is comming, so decided to wait till the end of this year to buy players. ahem. on the cheap of course..lol