You can patch up the defence, you can brag about millions in the bank, but top class football always comes down to the same thing.
We’ve known for the best part of 2 years that Almunia isn’t top class. Jens Lehmann said this in December 2007.
‘I am a football player every day and don’t like watching if someone is playing who has not got my class. And if nothing is changing, I grow angry’
Almunia doesn’t have half the class of Lehmann and today demonstrated why he isn’t good enough to sport the number 1 jersey of Arsenal. His first calamity was when he came bounding out of his area and smashed the forward over. He saved the penalty, but that wasn’t the point. The point was he gave away the penalty in the first place!
His second mistake came when he dropped his knee a full yard and half away from the boy and allowed the shot to slip into his inside post.
His third error arrived when once again he launched out of his area, realised he wasn’t making it unless he clattered the player, tried to make his way back into the area and allowed WBA to pass into the net. Worst thing, it was one of our English youth team players, Jerome Thomas.
That my friends is the fault of a manager who believes in the P&L over the Premier League, that for me is negligent. As I’ve said in previous match reports, Almunia isn’t good enough, as fans we over praise him when he does the basics right like he’s doing us a favour… and we support him. Today, the home crowd jeered him. Is that right? Probably not. Do I sympathise? Totally. We shouldn’t be watching a player who has never proved anything dropping clanger after clanger in the Premiership.
That was a message to Wenger. We don’t care about record profits. Spend £20million on a keeper and we still have £36million profit. So Where is our keeper? Even if we’d signed who we were after, why is Schwarzer our number one target? We’re better than that…
We were told by Wenger he has cured the defensive issues, we shipped 3 goals to a very average team, Arsene, you’ve cured nothing.
On the performance, well, it was flat, it contained very little urgency and if anything, it was complacent. The team selection was odd. Jack Wilshere had just played the game of his life and he was dropped, Eboue slipped in hopelessly in midfield and Song came back from suspension and performed like crap, again.
Chamakh had a very average game, his control was off and he barely had a shot. His work rate was high as always, but nothing else clicked. In fact, it’s difficult to praise anyone other than Nasri who performed extremely well with a driving performace.
The defensive mistakes were school boy. Watching Eboue get mugged by a West Brom player was pitiful viewing. Watching our team of technicians make bad pass after bad pass was painful.
Arsenal are like the London Philharmonic Orchestra. When everyone turns up to to work sober and in the mood, no one can match the music we make on the pitch. However, if the triangle player turns up in his pink boots after a night out on the orange juice, his mistimed chimes can ruin the whole sound and put others in the group off. We’re a finely tuned machine that can’t work if a few of the cogs are broken. Chelsea, despite losing to City are like the Libertines or the Clash. A string could break, the lead guitarist could fall off the stage, the drummer could snap a stick… but somehow, you still wouldn’t notice if you were listening.
Don’t forget the chavs lost to a highly rated City, both lost in the Carling Cup, so don’t blame the Carling cup on our performance, it didn’t stop City winning, and don’t forget WBA got stuffed six nil by the chavs, and we have to play them next, oh boy, God forbid.
Player Ratings by Geoff
Manuel Almunia 1
Bacary Sagna 3
Sebastien Squillaci 3
Laurent Koscielny 3
Gael Clichy 3
Emmanuel Eboue 3
Andrey Arshavin 6
Samir Nasri 10
Abou Diaby 3
Alex Song 3
Marouane Chamakh 5
Tomas Rosicky 6
Carlos Vela 3
Jack Wilshere 6
I gave Nasri a 10 because he played 120 minutes in midweek, hit the bar and scored 2 goals, I said before playing Song weakens our team, playing him with Eboue and Diaby is taking the mick, it’s a disaster.
I’m sorry if I upset anyone with Almunia’s 1, I know I was giving him too much but I couldn’t bring myself to give an Arsenal player a zero. The manager refuses to blame him, are you blind Arsene? Time to get rid of our two shocking keepers, time to promote Chezzer and Mannone, I don’t care how great our number 1 and 2 perform in training, on matchdays, they are shite, simple.
Today I’m marking the manager, he spent all week telling the press how great he is, he forgot to manage his team though, so I’ll give him a 1, same as Almunia, get over yourself Arsene, you are our manager, get back to managing.
Have a great day grovers, you work out how to, I can’t!