Arsenal win valuable point with excellent result + Transfer update

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I honestly believe we’ve pulled a very good result out of the bag. I think Liverpool will improve vastly on last years league position and I’m sure they’ll take points off the others in the top 4 scrum. You have to remember that we were missing Cesc, Robin and Song and we had players like Diaby who have hardly trained this preseason. We fielded the inexperienced Jack Wilshere, two Premier League debutants and a keeper not fit for purpose.

When you add all that up, it’s surprising we came away with anything!

I was also pleased with the goal we conceded and the overall sloppy performance from Almunia. He was given the captains armband in a weak attempt to instill a bit of confidence… the plan clearly didn’t work and he was typically diabolical all game. He flapped at 3 crosses and he didn’t react quick enough to the N’gog finish. A sad way to end a below average career at Arsenal. I hadn’t heard much about Schwarzer from the people I talk to regarding Arsenal but yesterday I was told we’ll secure his signature within the next ten days.

Not one to spread rumours, but him not being fit for Fulham’s first game has about as much credibility as my jokes. I heard we’re looking at 1-2 centre backs and the preference is British. Here’s hoping! When Wenger says that people aren’t selling, he’s not lying. Apparently there is a lot of truth in the Mertesacker, Jones and Jagielka stories.

We want good players but we’re not after them for silly money. If we bought Jagielka for £17million off the back of that serious injury and he broke down Robin style I think people would be calling for Wenger’s head. I guess it’s a similar story with Mertesacker, his height and presence is appealing, but the guy is error prone. If we bought him for £20million and he flopped, it’d be embarrassing.

The interesting thing about all this is that the only clubs in Europe with any money are City, Arsenal and the German clubs. Why aren’t teams selling? It should be a buyers market. Or is it like the stagnating housing market in the UK at the moment? People can’t buy because sellers have unrealistic price expectations?

I feel like I’m making excuses for Wenger here. The one thing I find incredibly incompetent is that we’ve taken so long to secure a new keeper. There is no excuse on that front and in a league that could be decided by a point, I find it maddening that we’ve already dropped two because of a keeping error.

Anyway, Arsenal dominated the first half possession statistics in embarrassing fashion.

Eboue was marauding through the Liverpool midfield taking any opportunity he could to plunge to the floor and feign injury. The guy is still an embarrassment to the club with his behaviour. Still, the resulting freekicks gave us a few chances, Thomas Vermaelen going closest with a rasping 30 yard striker.

Johnson was the first to test Almunia with a high central shot that was tipped over. The following corner found Ngog who was denied by Clichy on the near post.

Joe Cole was sent off for a very silly challenge on Kozzer. A tackle that saw our French boy stretchered off.  Chamakh was being offered no service whatsoever and our key players were given very little chance to express themselves. Liverpool were woeful.

The second saw the Koz come back on with and egg sized lump on his shin for his troubles. People have told me one of the Frenchman’s best attributes is that he’s a fighter and he has the right attitude. He was going to need that with the introduction of Torres. One area of his game he’ll need to work on is his ability to deal with aerial balls. He was beaten by N’gog early in the second half when perhaps he should have done better. All part of the steep learning curve. He looks sharp on the ground and he’s fast.

Our first goal was conceded after a catalogue of errors, N’gog was threaded through and he beat our captain at the near post. At least 5 mistakes were made in the build up to the goal.

1) Clichy had the ball passed through his legs

2) Arshavin made a poor pass

3) Jack fluffed his touch

4) There was no holding midfielder clearing up at the edge of the box

5) Almunia was beaten at his near post by a soft shot in my opinion

Arsenal brought on Theo and Rosicky and we lost Eboue and Jack. I’ve read some criticism of the young Englishman and I think that’s bang out of order. He’s 18, hugely talented and he just started against some of the worlds best midfielders. He deserves patience.

Theo, surprisingly changed up the game. He moved up top and his speed created a bit of a fear factor. He didn’t really do anything too spectacular but the fact we can bring two players of their calibre off the bench is very encouraging. Theo bent a freekick around the wall only to be denied by a tidy Reina save. Wenger should take note of how well other players took freekicks today.

Rosicky swept into the box off the back off the back of a lovely one two move with Arshavin, his shot impressively tipped over by Reina.

RvP managed to keep an Arshavin back post cross in, but Theo couldn’t capitalise on some Reina indecisiveness.

In the 89th minute, Rosicky floated an average cross into the box, Reina squinting in the sun didn’t come for the ball allowing Chamakh to nip in front of him and get a touch that hit the post, the ball came straight back at Reina who could do nothing other than bundle the ball into his own net.

What is it with Spanish keepers?

The game could have been killed off when Theo broke into the box with three players on hand to slot the ball home, instead of playing the ball to feet, he decided to go back post with a floated chip. Typical poor decision making from Theo. The ball went up the other end and Kuyt was dispossessed with a kick to the nuts by Kozzer. He picked up a his first yellow. Gerrard had a freekick 25 yards out that was saved by Almunia.

Koz still had time to make his mark on the game when he handled the ball and received a debut red card. Am I upset? No way! He’s one of the boys now!

After 5 painful minutes of injury time, 20 players finished the game and a point was shared.

Now we have a whole bunch of easy games coming up, we’ve got a full squad of players to choose from (Bar Rambo who is now running) and we’ll hopefully have a new goalkeeper and a centre back to get excited about.

Today wasn’t perfect, but remember, we’re not 100% fit, we’re missing key players and we don’t have a proper keeper.

Arsenal know what they have to do to make the league their own this year and I truly believe we’re going to bolster. Keep the faith for two more weeks Gooners. I’m pre-empting a great squad and I have no doubt we’ll be up there come this end of the season.

Could this be our year?

Let us know in the comments section!

Update: Track this seasons players ratings through google!

Player Liverpool (A)
Manuel Almunia 5
Abou Diaby 5
Bacary Sagna 6
Thomas Vermaelen 7
Laurent Koscielny 7
Tomas Rosicky 6.5
Samir Nasri 7
Robin van Persie 6
Theo Walcott 6
Jack Wilshere 6
Gael Clichy 6.5
Andrey Arshavin 5
Emmanuel Eboue 6
Marouane Chamakh 6

P.S. Check out the new site from the boys over at the Gunning Hawk, it’s taken them all summer and it launched over the weekend..

867 Responses to “Arsenal win valuable point with excellent result + Transfer update”

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  1. Keyser

    Diaby sat with Wilshire for most of the game, he was caught in two minds everytime he ventured forward, we all know his instinct is to go towards goal, but he also knew Wilshire’s going to be left alone behind him.

    He gets caught in two minds, but he’s barely played the holding midfield player role for us, and at times has looked good doing so, it’s just the balance between attack and defence that we need.

    Song would have helped a fair bit yesterday.

  2. Stu

    Theo thinks he is Henry all of a sudden. Taking free kicks and trying an audacious shot from the corner of the box that was never going in.

    It was a surprisingly good free kick, almost got it on target.

  3. SFOGooner

    Did you guys see the blackpool player (not sure what his name is) take a touch on the freekick and lob it?

    One of the best in EPL all time ..

  4. Lou

    Sion. I am with you on the abuse except, when I asked one of the leading merchants of hate for an alternative to his whipping boy he came up with the name Martin O’Neill. Now there are certain things in life which can either enhance or destroy one’s credibility and in my business, once it’s gone you may as well gorget it. I think you only need to call someone a “cunt” once to get the message across. Others quite naturally have another view and are not content with anything less that an all-day barrage of abuse, seven days a week. TAIG advised me to ignore that sort of thing so i have incorporated a filter system when reading the site these days. I liked the positivity of the post today but then I am not a realist.

  5. zeus

    Good Afternoon.
    Manhoo looking decent so far.
    I’ve been told I’m a brat for slating Wenger and that I should shut up, so I’m done for now.

  6. zeus


    LMAO. Cunt. Can’t say the word was apart of my vernacular until I Arsenal started to go into decline a few years back. Now, even for no reason whatsoever its CUNT CUNT CUNT.

  7. sixx pac

    Manuel Almunia has admitted he could be forced to leave Arsenal if Arsene Wenger brings in a new goalkeeper.

    Wenger has been linked with a host of goalkeepers this summer as he looks to bolster his squad, with Fulham ace Mark Schwarzer believed to be the Frenchman’s top target.

    Almunia started Arsenal’s draw with Liverpool in their first game of the new Premier League season, but he was criticised for not keeping out David Ngog’s opener.

    The Spaniard admits he has been frustrated by the constant speculation about a new goalkeeper arriving at Emirates Stadium, saying it has affected his confidence.

    “To be honest, it is so difficult to concentrate because Arsenal is a big club and speculation is always in the news and everywhere,” Almunia told the London Evening Standard.

    “The only thing I can do is keep working because I have a contract here and I have to do what the manager wants from me.

    “I have not spoken to him. If somebody comes in, I will have to talk about my future at Arsenal. That is it. I cannot talk now, because the talking would be for nothing. I have to work and if one day I am not good for Arsenal, I will talk. That is no problem. I am very happy here.

    “The only news I have is from third parties – people at the training ground. When I go out and when I come back from training, I switch off.”
    Almunia has been mentioned as a possible target for Aston Villa, but the 33-year-old admits he would find it difficult to play for another English club if he did leave Arsenal.

    “I don’t see anything else outside of Arsenal. It will be very difficult to play for another team in England if it wasn’t Arsenal. Spain would also be difficult,” added Almunia.

    “But I am 33 years old and only have a few more years left in football. I would like to enjoy them. I am a keeper who enjoys playing.”

  8. zeus

    Berbacunt fires Manure in front. Already the Manc m8 @ work is telling me the season is over……………after 33 minutes. Pffffffffff.

  9. JJ

    “Crosses” should be in quotes… They were unsuccessful for a reason… because they were nowhere near a player.

  10. JJ

    Walcott says that he just tries to play the ball into an area. Maybe he should try play it into an area where we have a player… as opposed to the area around the opposite corner flag.

  11. Keyser

    How does Johnny Evans get away with stuff like that ?!

    Newcastle had their chance in the first half, Carroll tallest player on the pitch six yards out free header and I think it hit him in the ear.

    Since then they’ve slowly lost shape and energy, think it’s a bit of shock to them coming back into the Premiership, or they might just be that bad.

  12. Keyser

    Berbatov looks absolute qualiteh though, wish we had one like that.

    Hopefully Fletcher or Scholes make another silly challenge and get sent off.

  13. LAzer

    We looked pretty average in comparison to Utd. But then lets be honest, its been like that for a while now. Our football was so uninspiring yesterday. True a draw is fair enough at Anfield but being 11 v 10 for more then a half you would expect more.

    Last 3-4 years I have come out with positivity at the start and truly felt it, this one just seems its going to be a drab long season. Wenger you have even taken the belief of never say die fans away with the 5yr gap.

  14. Stu

    He said “its a given” not the keeper will be Given. Completely different and no way a commentator would know something like that anyway.

  15. timao

    “Wenger you have even taken the belief of never say die fans away with the 5yr gap”

    what a pisstake. you can’t call yourself never say die if you roll over so easy, in the words of great ned schneeebly: if you want to be hardcore, you got to live hardcore!

    some other joker on a website called gooner4life wrote that he’d stop supporting arsenal if wenger doesn’t sign a keeper. what a prat. gooner4life my arse!

  16. Keyser

    Nah, I think he’s right, I went for a walk just now to the shops, because I needed something for a headache I had, and it got me thinking though the dull throbbing pain in my head got stronger.

    Are Newcastle that bad I thought to myself ? Or is that United have been that good ?! I mean weighing it up it seems ridiculous but I think Liverpool were far poorer than Newcastle today, but they matched them and then went onto dominate with ease.

    It was then my head cleared and the pain went away, I turned and walked back hom, just an excerpt from my upcoming book.

  17. reggie 57

    Turned off sky cant stand watching that cunt key’s salivating over manure, watching big brother now feel’s good!!

  18. LAzer

    Rolling over easy is what we have done every year. Rolling over easy is when Wenger decides to rest Arshavin in a FA cup game or put out an under strength side over and over again in cup competitions. A pisstake is burying your head in the sand and living in denial. I am just being honest. We just simply aren’t that good in comparison to Chelsea and Utd, our main rivals.

    Yeah its a long season and of course one game does not a season make but I still see weaknesses that haven’t been addressed and our possession football can be a chore to watch with absolutely no end product in sight at times.

  19. LAzer

    Utd have always played the way they play. Great on set pieces, a threat from pretty much any dead ball situation, wing play on both sides always stretches the field, terrific pin point crossing from multiple players, tough tackling, and midfielders making runs down the middle to join the attack.

    For us its possession football where the primary concern is to keep hold of the ball, a lot of the players pass back by instict now. It works when you have a Henry or Messi near the front to make devasting individual runs and break down defenses, it doesn’t when you have target men like Bendtner and Chamakh who need good service and players around them to pick up the pieces. Walcott runs into blind alleys, Arshavin can be frustrating, VP is injured too often, Nasri’s passing range is not ideal for a CM.

    In fact when Cesc returns I hope he plays as a CM along with Song as DM with Nasri further up the pitch in the attacking mid role.

  20. Stu

    Nasri doesnt play CM. He plays the Cesc role while Cesc is missing. No chance of Diaby or Song being dropped as first choice behind Cesc so Nasri wont be playing in the middle as a first choice this season.

  21. Stu

    Its interesting though how Wenger has tweeked the system to more of a 4-2-3-1 with 2 players in front of the defence rather than last season when it was mainly just Song with Diaby only coming back when we didnt have the ball. Yesterday even when we had the ball Wilshere and Diaby were pretty much side by side.

    It could have been because we didnt have a proper DM so there were both asked to stay back but even in pre season Wilshere was usually pretty deep next to Frimpong.

  22. Keyser

    I swear we were talking about that after the Emirates Cup ? I think it’s just because it is Wilshire and Diaby, though against the bigger teams that could be a concerted effort to not leave us soo open on the counter attack.

    It’s a good learning point for Wilshire as he needs to be able to hold his own in midfield.

  23. Man

    I’d like to see a 4411

    bk 4

    Rosicky/Arsh Cesc Song Nasri



    or with Rvp swapping positions with Chamakh

  24. TOM TOM

    So frustrating yesterday watching Sagna,Clichy and Walcott trying to cross balls,they never look up and pick out a player or maybe they dont have the ability to make good crosses

  25. A

    Given really would just make no sense at all, but does seem like there might be some truth in the interest. Hope not though!

  26. A

    because he’s just as bad at dealing with crosses and set pieces than our current keeper, and even smaller than them.

    he’s a spectacular shot stopper, which isn’t going to help one little bit when teams are bombarding us in the air

  27. Man

    or a 4411 with Diaby and Song in the middle…sorry Stu but don’t think we’ve played 4231 in the past 12months

  28. Marko

    I was delighted with the discipline from Diaby and Wilshere yesterday. Too often last season did we get caught with all our midfielders and full backs going forward and all we had was Song protecting the centre backs. If Diaby can show some discipline this season we’ll concede less goals. And thats a Given.

  29. Stu

    Diaby probably stayed back because he was told to and he knew that he didnt have the proper fitness to forray forward too much. First game back he was always going to take it easy.

  30. Marko

    Conor Henderson and James Shea the goalie are Irish on the youths. Even though I think Shea was born in like Finland or wherever if I remember properly. Or he was born in Ireland and raised in Finland.

  31. TOM TOM

    I think Given is ok at crosses,what about Schwarzer trying to deal with Crosses at the world cup? he was terrible

  32. Marko

    It doesn’t actually matter who comes cause it’s too late now for the likes of almunia, the fans have no believe in him and neither does anybody else for that matter so they need a new goalkeeper that’ll install some confidence throughout the team and the club.

  33. A

    i wouldn’t say it’s that noone can cross, but we certainly don’t ship in oafs who can do nothing other than be physical and then pump in high balls to the box….

  34. Stu

    Same thing A. We dont have anything/anyone in training that compared to actual matches so we cant prepare properly and our match day weaknesses arent addressed.

  35. Moray

    From the Guardian:

    The Indian businessman attempting to take control of Blackburn Rovers has promised the manager £100m to spend on players should his £300m offer for the club be accepted. Ahsan Ali Syed’s representatives opened talks with the Ewood Park club yesterday and the 36-year-old was reported to have made a promise of a huge transfer budget. “I want to give him support financially so that he can perform wonders,” said Syed.

    His comments came as a team from his company Western Gulf Advisory arrived in Lancashire yesterday with the aim of fixing a four-week negotiation period. The Indian, who lives in Bahrain, is the heir to a £5bn fortune and Syed said he wants to buy Blackburn because of his “passion” for the club and is not merely seeking to make a quick return on his investment.

    “For me the investment in Blackburn is more of a passion than a way to make a quick return on the balance sheet,” he said. “I am not investing to make a return in two years and walk away. I am coming in as a fan to invest in the long term.”

    Syed said that his first move on taking over would be to hand Allardyce the kind of funds that would ensure Blackburn’s place in the Premier League. “As part of our first five-year investment we will make £80m-£100m available to the manager. He has done a fantastic job for the club with constrained resources but I am sure that if he is given a free hand with the resources we can provide then Big Sam has the potential to do wonders.”

    Syed faces a rival bid for Rovers from Saurin Shah, who claims he will submit an offer this week, and he has yet to contact the Premier League about his takeover but said: “All my investments are out in the open but I will submit myself to whatever the Premier League requires of me.”

    — When billionaires are promising to give ol’ fat head a 100m quid kitty, then something has to be done.

    Football can’t continue to be run as a rich man’s plaything. Or else the true fans must do something about it. Because FIFA won’t, and the FA won’t – if they do they will act: 1) Out of proportion 2) Too late.

  36. sixx pac

    just rewatching the game and our goal. Heard the commentator say something very interesting. He said a year ago no one would have gone for the ball that Chamakh went for

  37. el tel

    Sixx pac

    Do you need a commentator to tell you this?

    I hear nothing but groans about our defence but its up front where we are short changed. For all the quality players we have only Nikki B gets into those positions yet because he misses a few he gets slaughtered.

    RVP will rarely make a run across the box for the wide men to hit and thats why it always looks like the corsser is shit. AA23 doesn’t hit the front post either therefore the crosser needs to be 100% accurate.

    Movement from the striker to attack the cross would make a massive difference.

    Chamakh attack will be the bollocks when the wide men sync with his runs.

    I would play RVP wide and AA23 on the other side with Chamakh attack either playing in the forward midfield runners or having a pop himself.

    I also think we need another striker too.

  38. el tel

    The Chavs and Man cunts get a give me for the first game and then get lauded as Champions.

    We will see. Both of them have old cunts in the team and I reckon they will run out of steam in the last quarter unless thay buy again.

    Old cunts. Scholes, Giggs, Neville, Rio, Van Der Sar.

    Terry, Dogshit, Lumplard, Annelka, The Portuguese RB.

    They are getting on a bit now.

    Not saying they won’t win nothing but it will be harder than the past 4 years.

    Liverpool away first match will be a blessing as they will improve and beat either of the so called Champions.

    We did well on Sunday with that tosser in goal and so many others like Clichy and Diaby in the team.

    Things can only get better.

  39. Honest Bill

    I’d like to know why Scholes never gets red carded. Is it because he looks like a 12 year old?

    And why do the commentators all think his dangerous tackles are somehow the hilarious antics of a cheeky little scamp, as opposed to what they really are?

    Dirty little cunt. If referees weren’t so inept, he’d have only played half the games he’s played so far.

    It’s every fucking game

  40. bergy

    Given would be a huge improvement over laurel and hardy

    MS aint that good at shot stopping.
    But would take MS over our current gk’s anytime

    any news on a new defender?

  41. Victoria

    Why do I wait with such anticipation? It is like waiting for a sleeping pill. Totally innocuous, ineffectual, and blase. The difference between Arsenal and Barcelona is not the play, technique and tactics but simply that Barcelona actually work their guts out to play the way they do. We are intoxicated on narcotics by our own brilliance. Arsenal are like an old French (see AW) lover. Too much foreplay and little penetration.

  42. finestcuts

    In the event that the Schwarzer deal falls through in the last minute, or we can’t strike a deal with Citeh for Given (highly probable) here is an answer to our goalkeeping situation. It is a complete wildcard
    but a good one.

    Experienced? Yes
    Multiple trophy winner? Yes
    Reputation as one of the best? Yes
    Within our price range (Well anyone is really but you know the score…)? Yes

    Three times African Nations Cup winner Essam El-Hadary