Arsenal have an INDIVIDUAL problem | Crazy transfer target mooted

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I’ve read people claiming that yesterday’s poor result was down to the team and it would be unfair to pick out individuals when critiquing the afternoon (as always…).

Sorry, but I shan’t be having that.

Yesterday’s issue was about the level of our second string not being as high as we’d like to imagine. We’ve seen that demonstrated twice in 2 weeks. It’s not a coincidence that teams that have Eboue, Denilson, Bendtner and dare I say it… Arshavin, suffer when they’re all mashed into our ‘strongest’ team of the day.

Now, I am sure I can muster a defence for a number of the players if I put my mind to it, so I’ll give you the run down.

Nik Bendtner

Simply put, he is not a F*CKING winger. Apologies for my bad language, but this isn’t like sticking Reyes, Wiltord or Theo out wide… this is putting a cumbersome 6ft4 lump out on the wing. You only have to look at him to see that he’s never going to work out there. He knows psychologically he’s no good there and that affects his game. His touch was atrocious yesterday, his finishing was diabolical and his attitude stank.

Can I blame him? Not really… he was hung out to dry being put out wide. His game was summed up late on when he lashed wildly at a floated pass. He should have struck it, however, a good standard of Sunday league player would have landed that on target.

Emmanuel Eboue

I’ve never bought into this whole cult thing we do for him. It irritates me because at the heart of it, there is a poor player who is mistake ridden in the extreme. His passing was disastrous and his decision making was laughable. There was also time for a standard injury feign and dive that was surprisingly ignored by the referee. Let him go to Roma, he’s too old to be back up right back. Surely there is a career he’s killing?

Denilson

On the receiving end of a lot of cyber anger yesterday. I’ve got to say, I thought he was superb in the first half. His passing was unusually creative and I thought he was playing his role very well. However, after we went one down, his good play was flushed down the toilet. He was missing tackles, jogging and guilty of poor decision making. He conceded the penalty and once again, his lack of mobility was on show for all to see.

Arshavin

Quite frankly one of the most embarrassing performances I’ve ever seen from a player who has so much talent. It rivals Eboue’s cameo against Wigan where he was booed. He completely missed the ball twice, he’s been hanging out with Song’s imaginary friend and can’t stop passing to him and again, his decision making was terrible.

I feel really bad for him, his confidence has been destroyed over the last month and the fans really did treat him badly yesterday. For me, when a player has that much talent, you have to give him a bit of love. Our lot have had enough and that’s very sad. What really gets me is that no one on the pitch put an arm around him and told him to pull himself together. For a team that has more spirit than a Jack Daniels factory, we seem to have very little communication on the pitch when things are going wrong.

… you know what, for a player that has given us 4 goals and 12 assists this year, the crowd were disgraceful.

There, I said it. I don’t like knocking people who pay to see the game but he was getting pelters for things that weren’t even his fault. Regardless of how poor he was, he still looked the most dangerous player out there and he kept plugging away.

One more player I have to throw into the mix is Thomas Rosicky. He was pretty awful all day. We’ve waited 4 years for him to come good, now he’s injury free, he’s next to useless on the pitch. He doesn’t score, he doesn’t assist and he goes missing for large chunks of the game. He is like a 100 year old time piece that has been left in the cupboard. It’s beautiful to look at becuase you can imagine what it was like in it’s prime, however, wind it up and put it into the real world, the timing is going to be all over the shop and it’ll never quite work the same.

That is really sad, but it highlights the harsh realities of top level football these days. Loyalty to perma-crocks gets you no where.

All of the above, combined with players who were doing a pretty good job ended up in us not being able to turn over a Leeds team who came to play football against us!

The game from a neutral perspective must have been fantastic, from where I was sitting, it was most awkward. Watching Cesc Fabregas and Theo come onto rescue us was a sad indictment of our second string. Watching the Spaniard play long balls was a grim reflection of the poor movement of our team.

Arsenal dominated possession in the first half creating plenty of chances. Arshavin went closest when he beat the offside trap, his problem was too much time, firing straight at Schmeichel junior.

The second half Leeds came out of the blocks and won a penalty after Denilson stuck a clumsy leg out in the box. Chesney dived close to the Snodgrass penalty but the ball was fired too hard for him to keep it out.

Arsenal fell to pieces from there. The midfield couldn’t keep hold of the ball and we nearly went 2 down from a corner, luckily Chesney pulled off what can only be described as a world-class save. We nearly shipped another goal when a freekick was zipped over the bar marginally.

Cesc Fabregas came on for Alex Song which was the first of the strange substitutions. I didn’t think the man from Cameroon was having a bad game and there were plenty of others who clearly were. Cesc boosted our morale and we started to pressure Leeds.

The next sub was Theo. He came on for Chamakh, again, a bizarre choice considering 1) Chamakh was our leading scorer out there 2) Bendtner was having a shocker out wide and was clearly not in the frame of mind to move into the middle and have a stormer.

The final sub was Carlos Vela who came on for Rosicky, which was a fair shout, but I think Arshavin would have been a better option.

Anyway, we pressed and nearly won a penalty but Theo dived, something he admitted after the game, along with stealing Tommy Turner’s pencil case in year 4 at Junior School. Theo, we forgive you, your honesty and good upbringing shames the likes of John Terry and Wayne Rooney.

Moments later, Theo bounded into the area again, his shirt was tugged by Bromby, the ref pointed to the spot. Cesc stepped up and silenced 9000 very loud Leeds fans!

Jeez, that was close…

If Wenger wants to win the FA Cup, he’s going to have to make some big decisions about who he plays going forward. His second string aren’t good enough in large doses and that was highlighted today. Still, the good thing is we fought till the end, our heads didn’t drop and we have secured a replay. It’s not the end of the world, just a bit of ball ache having to head up to the North for a replay.

Arsenal’s fortunes changed when Theo came onto the pitch. He was excellent. If his finishing was a little sharper, he’d have won us that game on his own. He’s a real pleasure to watch at the moment and it finally looks like he’s starting to understand what is required at the highest level. I thought a JD once again deserves a big shout out. He was calm and assured next to the typically erratic Squillaci.

I also thought Gibbs played well it’s a shame he picked up an injury.

Oh wait, he didn’t… sorry, that last line was a force of habit.

Leeds deserve a lot of credit. They were physical, but they took the game to us today and that is a very brave thing to do. I applaud Simon Grayson for showing guts like that. It’s a shame that our players couldn’t handle that. There’s no parked bus excuse to hide behind today.

Next up… Ipswich Town in the Carling Cup… I’ve heard we’re on our way to Wembley if we smash these lot?!

Transfer Roundup

Arsenal are rumoured to be back in for Sol Campbell for a third time. I love Big Sol but Wenger opting for him over Chris Samba, Brede Hangeland or Gary Cahill would be a showing a severe lack of ambition. If he’s not good enough for Newcastle, he sure as hell shouldn’t be anywhere near our line up. We need a player who can play more than once a week.

Another player we’ve been looking at is Falcao of FC Porto. He is the clinical Columbian many clubs have been looking at for a while. He’s agile, technically gifted and I’ve always been impressed when I’ve seen him play. He’d come at a price but when you’re one of the richest clubs in the world, that matters not providing City or Madrid aren’t sniffing around as well.

I have been assured that we are scouting players at the moment, so there is a chance that we might have a new player this window.

Don’t hold your breath though!

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523 Responses to “Arsenal have an INDIVIDUAL problem | Crazy transfer target mooted”

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  1. sangbaran

    I thought rosicky had an equally bad game as arsha and b52!!! ZERO creativity for the entire game!!!!we cannot leave cesc,samir and jack all in the same game.Simply no no!!!

  2. Rohan

    I hope Theo’s “honesty” doesn’t come back to hurt us. Surprised not more has been made of it in the media.

    When van Persie said something on the same subject but not even close to as controversial, the shit hit the fan.

  3. pantsR2long

    Top post!!!

    Missed the game though from the things I’ve read I’m gathering I didn’t miss much. shame about Arshavin really, the guy looked like a world beater when we first signed him but he really has started to fade quite dramatically, sell him in the summer and snap up Hazard I (and many others) say!

  4. Michael

    I didn’t think Leeds were physical to be honest they just wanted it more than we did. Considering they were plying their trade in League one last season I’m staggered we couldn’t turn them over. Once again we think that turning up is all that’s needed.

  5. Rocka

    If I may rebut (Although I admit I didn’t get to see the game, as no coverage in Oz)

    1. Bendtner is better running with the ball at defenders rather than with his back to goal when his lack of technique is evident. Therefore I have no problems with him on the wing.

    2. Eboue is a great squad option, and more than handy right back.

    3. Denilson. Well I can’t disagree too much. He is good at keeping things ticking over, but where Cesc, Wilshere, and Ramsey are better is moving forward with the ball. Denilson always just looks to pass it. Which would be fine as a defensive midfielder, but then you need other attributes like being strong in the tackle, which is he is not.

    4. Arshavin getting booed. His stats may be good, and he is obviously very talented, but he just looks like he doesn’t give a sh*t most of the time. That is what pisses me off, so many people would love his talent, but he seems intent on wasting it most of the time. So no surprised he gets booed.

    Agreed about that Sol, that would be a shocker.

  6. kwaku

    I was not surprise Bendtner could not hit with the left. One one has to tell our players to spend aba an hour to improve upon their weak points.

  7. kwaku

    I was not surprise Bendtner could not hit with the left. No one has to tell our players to spend aba an hour to improve upon their weak points.

  8. reggie 57

    Morning all!! cant see any new players coming in the window!! once again we are gonna be let down by wengers reluctance to spend,cant see for the life of me why he persists with duds like bendtner,eboue,vela,etc,can see this season going like the last five have ,close but no cigar…..

  9. azed

    I thought bendtner had a good game…
    Squillaci is related 2 silvestre somehow… Something is wrong when we need el capi n theo 2 get us a replay against leeds.

  10. Rohan

    Dunno Pedro..it adds fuel to the “Arsenal fairies” brigade. We could’ve done without that imo. Does more harm than good.

    Him joking with the referee puts the ice on the cake though. Who the fuck does that?

  11. Rohan

    Atleast Bendtner gets into position to miss those chances. Chamakh doesn’t seem to….

    As a young striker, I’d be more worried if he weren’t getting those chances. Composure in front of goal will come with an extended run ( remember he’s hardly been playing this season and when he has been given a start, it’s never been with the first team) although I do agree he needs to start delivering now on in if he’s ever going to make it with us.

  12. Sahara

    Every word rings true. Well written Pedro.
    Must add that Song’s head wasn’t right in the 1st 20mins. Unnecessary fancy tricks summed up our initial approach and attitude.
    Leeds were always going to play a cup final like game. That should have been clear to our boys from the get go. The attitude will obviously be different at the replay.
    Hope Arsh comes good soon. That cliche, form is temporary……

  13. wrightydenhenry

    Generally fair appraisal Eboue was very poor today as he always is against the lesser teams, Leeds had identified this and attacked mainly down that side. Denilson, too slow tracking back, and Eboue, totally out of position were at fault for the pen when we were completely in charge. I’d like to see Rosicky and Arshavin swap positions when we play this type of team. Arsh is more creative and Rosicky works more up and down when he plays wide.
    Wonder what team we’ll play on Weds night,first trip to Portman Road.

  14. wirral gooner

    who does song think he is!!! he stunk his play was awful all he wants to do is stand out with his horror looks.

  15. kwaku

    I have never seen JD play such a great football at the back like that before. He was next to perfect yesterday. AA23 must be goin through emotional problems, he needs a Psychologist or a Social worker. He is definately not in de right frame of mind. That was exhibited by his recent performances. Good morning all Gunners, at the Grove!

  16. timao

    here’s been a vacancy at arsenal for a reliable clinical striker ever since eduardo went down. if bendtner was going to be that person you feel he should really have proved it by now.

    i like bendtner and i wish he would be the answer, but he needs to do better with chances like yesterday.

  17. reggie 57

    How old is Bendtner now?dont think he is good enough for us imo,his attitude stinks wtf was that all about yesterday flinging his hands up in the air after a shit pass (from himself) his bollocks are getting so big he will be needing a wheelbarrow when he next plays on the hallowed turf !!Dont rate him and never have done time to move on……

  18. Rohan

    Bendtner needs a good run of atleast 3-4 games back to back to get to full match fitness. Playing once every 2 weeks really isn’t going to help……

  19. Doublegooner

    Reliably told yesterday asolutely no new players coming.

    That may ( dont hold your breath) if TV suffers a setback.

    Sad news, Almunia could go ( snigger)

    Still, don’t despair, all the flats are sold & we have pots of cash plus plenty of overpaid 2nd rate shit as shown on display yesterday.

  20. melvyn

    Excellent blog – I get worried if I ever see one of Denilson / Bendy / Squilaci on the team sheet when I see all three I despair – I think Squilaci ranks alongside the infamous Gus Ceaser.

    AW is the only “great” manager that has no tactical awareness whatever his team choice his subs – who would ever pair Bendy and Chamakh and put the former on the wing.

    This is I presume the same team that will play Ipswich – we could struggle.

  21. patthegooner

    I was fully behind the signing of Campbell last season, but agree that it would not be a good move this.

    Hopefully Wenger has seen enough of Squillaci now to realise he cant stay longer than a season, so go and get Mertersacker. we play enough games and get enough injuries to keep them all happy.

    Falcao I reckon is agent talk.

    As for the game, Denilson is an idiot and is not good enough at this level. What I will say though is that Koscielny did similar a couple of weeks ago, it cost us points and yet nobody was really critical of it, and he is a defender who should definately know better. Back to Denilson, I think it is telling that Cesc finally criticised him publically for the foul. I guess that is years of frustration of having to play with him coming out.

    Arshavin, what can you say. I dont blame the Arsenal fans at all. Arshavin can be a very very special player but for some reason he does not seem to give a shit at the moment and is putting in zero effort, so based on that alone, I feel that the Gooners are entitled to voice their opinion at the ground. As for putting an arm around his shoulder, I think he is big enough and ugly enough to sort this out for himself, especially as it is down to lazyness and not a dip in form.

  22. patthegooner

    Timao

    I would say that vacancy has been there since Henry left.

    I loved Eduardo, but whilst he was a clinical striker, the goal scoring record was never what i would call clinical.

  23. timao

    the crowd was disgraceful for booing arshavin – it’s such a shame when fans turn on their own players, it seems to happen at many of the big clubs these days, but arsenal is getting a reputation as one of the worst for this habit.

    regardless of the fact you’ve paid for a ticket and players may not be performing as well as they might, i still don’t like being associated with this habit for slagging our own team.

    and rather than make things better, slagging our own players can only drag the club down. pisses me off really because these are the same fans that bitch and moan about player ‘loyalty’ etc.

    these fans who boo are fucking childish idiots frankly.

  24. patthegooner

    Timao

    I would do it, but I can understand their frustrations. They are paying a lot of money for that seat, and it was clear to see that Arshavin would have been a lot happier if he was somewhere else. It was a terrible performance and sadly not a one off, this has been going on for weeks

  25. Man

    Arshavin was dire through out…the only thing he threatened was breaking sweat! I’m not surprised, its been a long time coming.

    Bendtner was as bad playing playing upfront as he was playing right forward but kudos to him for making the pass that resulted in the penalty.
    Chamakh would have done better with some of the heading opportunities Bendtner missed. We really need to use Chamakh in teh right way – we need to make more crosses into the box.

    I don’t think Denilson and Eboue were as poor as posters have them out to be.

    Well, at least we live to fight another day. Quite interesting that before the match Wenger, in one of his interviews, recalled how Arsenal drew with Port Vale a few years ago had a replay, won it and went on to lift the cup. Yesterday’s result might just be a good omen.

  26. Nesta, Ghana

    there is no excuse for Bendtner for not hitting it at the left wing. when he’s in his element, that’s where he mostly scores. Remember carling cup goal against New Castle? Asharvin has started getting on my nerves! too slow, very predictable and very lazy dropping back to defend.

  27. Albo

    Did anyone else reckon Wenger took Rosicky off instead of Arshavin specifically to avoid singling him out for crowd abuse a la Eboue?

  28. kingsley

    i just cant see how wenger and his scouts can get the centre back signings so wrong over the summer. he knew he had to replace gallas and sol and he comes up with squillaci? the bloke was awful against leeds, he lack confidence and comes off second best in all the duals. he made beccio look world class. shocking!

  29. kc

    The English biast is so F’n thick you could cut it with a knife. Do you people ever listen to yourselves talk ffs? Walcott makes a mistake and he’s just not a good decision maker. Arshavin gets heckled for the same mistake and he’s twice the talent, just not British. Pathetic. You fuckers keep it up and you’ll succeed in running all of the brilliant imported talent out of the country. If any non-british player were to admit diving it would be the biggest sin of all time, Theo does it and all is well. Mental.

  30. Fanagooner

    (1) Bendtner is great up front if arsenal play defensively, simply because he hasn’t got the technique to turn around defenders! He has not got pace like theo, so playing him on the wings was an “ok” decision!
    (2) Eboue is an amazing player, technically he is superb. HE made blocks, runs and all he could do but the players around him were more “watching him” run with the ball and this doesn’t help to pass.
    (3) Arshavin has got all he needs to be a great player, what he lacks most of the time now is focus! He really doesn’t seem to care about the game unless he has the ball in his feets.
    (4) If theo hadn’t revealed his “dive” no one could have suspected, but there was a impact from the CB… So despite the dive, the penalty was just fair…
    (5) Sol??? I don’t think so!
    (6) Denilson: “Quite frankly i was sad to hear he could leave, now i don’t mind if he left! RAmsey is better than him, he’s going to be great wherever he goes, because he has talent. But at arsenal he hasn’t got game time and also he’s slow for arsenal!
    (7) TO end it is just amazing to hear FAbregas’ last interview… Go here: http://www.ashburtongrove.co.uk/2011/01/it-would-be-dream-to-lift-trophies-for.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+AshburtonGrove+(AshburtonGrove.co.uk)

  31. Rohan

    Agree, it’s fucking pointless booing players. I thought we were supposed to be a club with class and so on. Arshavin’s been dire but not been all that bad this season..he’s having a bad time-he needs the fans to pull him through.

  32. timao

    patthegooner – i think eduardo has been clinical everywhere except arsenal (including internationals) and he didn’t get a chance at arsenal to prove himself – but the signs were very positive

  33. timao

    Rohan – despite what a lot of people here might wish to believe, Arsenal are a club with class. Arsenal fans on the other hand…

  34. Doublegooner

    Pedro:

    You couldn’t have summed up Rosicky better. Another example of millions down the drain.

    He should have been cleared out in the summer, but Wenger likes ‘yes’ players who cause no problems& he another who fits the bill.

  35. finestcuts

    We can’t be going for Campbell again, he wasn’t much help last season….too tired to face Barca and we had to resort to Silvestre. If we need one but one and if we have a spare one come the end of the season we can sell the one we least use, or loan him out. Wouldn’t it be better to have an extra centreback on loan with an emergency clause if we’re in need?

    Of course Bendtner shouldn’t be played out wide, I’m surprised Wenger played him there but I don’t accept that as an excuse for him not putting a shift in. He had chances, could have done far more with the ball when he had it, he drifted in centrally a lot of the time pretty much leaving it for Eboue to mop up.

  36. Dial Square

    kc that is the biggest load of shit i have heard in a long time,do you ever go to matches and hear the support we give to non English players.

  37. kingsley

    defenders availbale this jan…….samba…mertastacker….agger…raul abbiol. but we go for sol again………

  38. Rohan

    Just to have some perspective, United’s B team lost 4-0 to West Ham. 😀

    We’re still the only team on course in all 4 competitions.

  39. Man

    I think it was after 30mins Bendtner moved to centre forward with Chamakh playing wide.
    Bendtner, Chamakh and Arshavin interchanged most of the match yesterday. I’m afraid playing out wide cannot be used as an excuse for Bendtner’s shortcomings yesterday.

  40. finestcuts

    Yup KC well overboard…….English fans give more support to foreign players than any other country would to foreign players. Double standards really……..you’re too used to the English giving leeway and being on the defensive. Your stereotypes of English fans are naive.

  41. Arse&Nose©

    Bentdner has the worst touch of any striker in the league. Every time the ball bounces 5 yards away from him.

  42. tenerife gerry

    Morning

    10 internationals with a shit attitude and no passion. Average Championship players with bags of enthusiasm and a desire to progress in the world’s oldest cup competition! Simple as that!

    Never mind, 60K to 100k to pick up this week, headphones back on there heads, a manager that will never bollock or threaten to sell them. He has told the world there is no plan B.Do they give a shit this morning, don’t think so! We have agroup of players that are so far removed from the fans that after 40 years of support I sometimes now ask myself why I bother with this lot?

  43. patthegooner

    Rohan if it was an issue with form I would agree that it is up to the Arsenal fans to help pull Arshavin through.

    But he is putting in no effort, He is playing shit due to a cant be fucked attitude rather than any confidence or form issue. I would not join in, but fully understand why the fans booed him yesterday.

    Arshavin was a disgrace yesterday and has been for about a month. It is a real shame as it is players like him that we really need to step up at the moment, and he could step up, if only he was bothered.

  44. mario

    quite disgraceful to c our lot booin arshavin when they were others who had quite a worse game than the russian did…..i believe sol is far better than squillaci tbh and could be the vital exprience we need to win the league….have a good day…cheers !!

  45. Albo

    patthegooner – I totally disagree about booing for a couple of reasons. Firstly, on a general level, it is simply never helpful. At no point has the crowd booing or heckling one of their own players ever helped that individual or the rest of the team play better. (Quite the opposite in fact).

    But specifically about Arshavin, I can’t stand it when we ascribe motives to a player who we don’t even know and then use that to justify our behaviour. You say he ‘does not seem to give a shit’ and is ‘putting in zero effort’, but actually, it looked to me like he was plugging away again and again and nothing went right for him. Also, his demeanour could equally be that of someone who massively gives a shit and is just so frustrated at his lack of form that his head has dropped. I don’t know either way, but I don’t understand why fans are so willing to assume the worst. Or so happy to make matters worse by knocking the player’s confidence further – particularly a player who, if he found his form again, could be so instrumental to us winning trophies this season.

    Bottom line is this – I don’t care how much they’ve paid for a ticket, booing our players inhibits the team on the field and reflects awfully on the fans and the club, and should never, ever happen.

  46. Jaguar reloaded

    Albo,those are well paid professionals who know what they should be doing,and if they get booed,better get on with their jobs.If the confidence of the retards like Dudaby and Denilshite are fucked,fuck those cunts.They are not good enough to play for us.Its not like our fants are singing racist chants against them.

  47. Cescs_MyBoy

    Morning all. Pedro, that a very fair right up.

    I generally try defend a player like Denilson who doesnt receive enough praise, like you have for his excellent first half. However he commits the o defensible too frequently. And he is a fairly senior player.

    I don’t think drastic changes are needed but I would sell/ loan Denilson and Bendtner and give their squad roles to JET and Lansbury. With a view to adding experience in the summer

  48. Jaguar reloaded

    Out:Dudaby,Denilshite,Rosicky,Kolshitieny and Squillaci
    In:Hazard,Subotic,Samba and Capoue-Etienne

    And we are in for the domestic treble.

  49. Armourist

    All the players in the team yesterday, need games, i think thats the main issue. They hardly play and you cant expect them to be top form once they come in.

    That said, with the chances created the game should have been wrapped up.

    Bendy needs games to get better, Cham has had games but he isn’t any more than a target man and he’s knackered, neither was likely to score.

    We need to upgrade our strikers.

  50. patthegooner

    Dont agree Albo

    I think the booing is exactly the kick up the arse that Arshavin needed and I expect him to put in a blinder in the next game he plays.

    As I said, it is not something I would do, but if you pay the money you have the right to voice your displeasure especially when a player puts in such a effortless performance.

    I would also add that football is full of emotion, and it is very hard to keep a lid on that emotion even if it is for the good of the team, and there are probably 100’s who booed yesterday that never thought they would. The fact that there were so many doing it proved that.

    I can only go off what I see with my eyes. I love Arshavin and think that on his day he is world class. I have seen him drift in and out of games, but at the moment his game is different. He is not drifting, he is not trying and I think the fact that he has been dropped from being a 1st team regular shows that.

  51. patthegooner

    As for it not helping

    It helped Eboue a couple of seasons ago. He really got his shit in order and won his cult status back.

  52. Albo

    On Eboue, in a bit of a reversal from the received wisdom about him, I actually thought he had a good game defensively yesterday – put in tons of blocks and excellent tackles. (I can’t remember where he was for the penalty, but given the nature of the modern fullback he would have been within his rights to have been caught upfield at the time…)

    It was going forward I thought he let himself down – particularly that habit he has of bombing forward with his head down and missing chances to pass before running into a dead end. On a couple of occasions toward the end he had Walcott ahead of him, ready to be released and he totally ignored him. He’s also actually a pretty decent crosser of the ball, and needs to get his head up and get it into the box every so often.

  53. wattsy65

    Thanks Pedro for a reasoned argument for and against various players, Must admit I came on last evening and let rip with vitriol because I had to let off steam, my language was foul, but then so was my mood.My opinion still is that there are no no excuses for Arshavin or Denilson, they were both complete and absolute rubbish for the whole 94mins, both should have been off at half time. Eboue and Nikki B are simply not good enough regardless of where they play. Cash in on all of them now along with out 2 brittle players Diaby and RVP. Not all the blame however should be placed at the players door, the team selection and positional tactics are Wengers responsibility, he was found wanting yet again,and as against Wigan he got it all woefully wrong, along with the substitutions, not so much who he brought on, but sadly who he left still on the pitch.If he did not want a replay, then put out a team who are capable of winning the match at the first attempt, problem solved, Only he knows why Ramsey was not used, he overprotects players far too much, the guy is what 20 years old, 2 games a week, for a week or two at that age should not be a problem, send him out to get match fit, then get him back and wrap him up in cotton wool, senseless.

    As for Campbell coming back, it’s just to laughable to be true.

    We must be the most ungrateful bunch of supporters in the world, still in there shouting for all four comps, and still we are not satisfied, but then we all know why don’t we, our only realistic chance of silverware is the Carling Cup, but who would bet against Wenger cocking that up as well, it’s what he does best.

  54. patthegooner

    Albo, I agree with you on Eboue.

    I think he would be a 1st choice RB in most PL teams, so to have him as backup is superb.

    I also thought he did ok yesterday

  55. Gooneroo

    Bendtner played on the wing early last season and he played very well in those games..Everton away springs to mind. I know he’s a striker but to play on the wing when the worlds best header of the ball is waiting in the box for a decent cross so he can head home, all you need is the basics: ball control, crossing, passing, dribbling, etc. & I don’t think Bendy possesses any of that.

  56. Albo

    patthegooner – well, we’d like to claim the booing ‘helped’ but more likely he just got his fitness back and slowly got his form back.

    Football is about emotion, but no matter how strongly I feel I don’t think I could ever do something that I know is an embarrassment to out club…

  57. Albo

    (Also re Eboue – the booing might have been a kick up the arse for him in the longer term I suppose, but it frickin destroyed him on the day and made matters a lot worse in the particular game)

  58. dire

    Our home game against Barca he delivrd da same pas to walcot,ysday he did da same n we had a penalt.gues who? B52

  59. patthegooner

    That was Wengers fault Albo and on that day, I felt the ironic cheers when eboue the substitute was substituted were mainly aimed towards Wenger for playing him on the left in the first place.

    I dont think Wenger helps his players or the fans with that.

    For instance when a Left Winger plays and has a shit game playing on the Left Wing, fans can easily feel it was just a bad day at the office.

    But when the team is announced and you see that a RB is playing Left Wing, the frustration is already there, so when it does not work and he has a shit game, those frustrations will come out.

    And that is what happened to Eboue.

  60. soulrebel

    I agree with pretty much all of the article today. Denilson sometimes shows that he has a very bright future, all be it a late developer. His problem is a mental one. I think he is still a bag of nerves and I still don’t know if its worth keeping him with us to wait for him to mature. To be honest, I’m glad its not my choice!

    I’ve gotta say I agree on Rosicky. Maybe a bit strong but the bloke is impotent. Remember the 07 08 season with him, fabregas, flamini and Hleb playing in midfield together??? Where did that player go? Perhaps with a brilliant pre-season behind him he could re discover himself.

    As for Bendtner, I know he was played out of position but I think his time is up.

  61. Rohan

    Rosicky is happy on the bench. You’d struggle to get a player of his experience and quality to sit on the bench imo. I still maintain that the goals will come..Class is permanent.

    He should have got an assist yesterday for that defense splitting pass which Arshavin fluffed.

  62. Gooby

    the problem is we’re toothless with rosicky and arsahvin.

    rosicky and arshavin should be reliable because of their experience, they must drive the team forward and push the likes of bendy, denilson, chamakh to perform. instead they look clueless and not up to it.
    it might be a drop of form but it isn’t the best time to let the team down. we’ve got 4 competitions the squad must be ready to face every challenge

  63. gambon

    99% of the time I don’t agree with booing players. That said, someone needs to tell Arshavin that he needs to sort himself out, and we know wenger won’t do it, we also know the other players won’t cos wengers built this culture where no-one can criticize and no-one can shout.

    We have way too many players that are either shit or inconsistent, hence inconsistent form, particularly at home. Denilson, Squillaci, Clichy & Rosicky are shit.Fabianski, Song, Koscielny, Arshavin & Bendtner are inconsistent. Then you add perma crocks like Diaby & Rvp to the mix and you can see we’re miles away from winning the league.

  64. silentstan

    the fact we are looking at Sol is an embarrassment.
    the fact we wont go for Hazard till summer when arsh and rosicky are pointless is embarrassing.
    the fact we wont go for falcao till summer when bendtner and vela are pointless is embarrassing.

    WENGER IS EMBARRASSING playing that lot again

  65. Gooby

    hazard said that his dream is to play for the arsenal

    wenger said: “let us try to make his dream come true, we are following him”

    he wants him, it’s not rocket science

  66. terry

    Unbelievable how can u guys expect arshavin nd nikki b to perform when they r clearly played out of position arshavin should play as a second striker in a 442 formation nd nikki b as a leading striker

  67. Pondera

    NB52 was ok nothing special but at least he tried ! Arshavin & denilson we’re jogging around after we went a goal down and that’s for me the lowest !! I mean we play a fucking cup game and those 2 don’t cate ! sell both of them !! Hate players who don’t try !

  68. Sparrow

    Good Post,

    I was at the game yesterday and have to admit JD was top class, he was our best player on the pitch by miles.

    Also, thought Rosicky had a shocker, lightweight on the ball and passing was in the usual crab format.

  69. Cavalry

    Having watched them yesterday versus Leeds and against Wigan last week one thing has become painfully obvious. If you take Arshavin, Denilson, Bendtner, Rosicky as a group it is patently obvious that they have no pace whatsoever and very little power or drive. The first three in particular play with their heads and shoulders down. They are no way sharp and never look up for the fight. Playing these together and it is no surprise that we struggle even against mediocre teams. Sadly Chamakh is also heading in the same dismal direction. Would disinterested be too strong an adjective to use to describe their efforts as to me they are only giving 70% of what they could.
    As for Arshavin he has to go. His attitude will eventually spread like a cancer throughout the team.
    It took Fabregas to come on yesterday to up the tempo from this absolute lethargy.

  70. Joppa

    1. Like I have been saying all season long the Arsenal squad players simply aren’t good enough. Better off getting shot of Eboue, Denilson etc and given some youth players a game (could they be that much worse).

    2. Do Arsenal fans live in fantasy land thinking we should walk that match?

    3. WTF was Theo thinking coming out and saying that? That to me is a real problem. You win the match first, if you have to take the odd dive then so be it. If Arsenal players don’t have that winning mentality then there is something very wrong. Win at all costs.

  71. bigboned

    i think arshavin’s been consistently bad since the start of the last season..

    i really think his problem is about chemistry.. he joined arsenal as an older player for this club’s standards. and the way arsenal plays requires a lot of chemistry between.. wallcott, rvp, cesc, nasri walk onto pitch and they can pretty much read each other’s minds.. they’ve learnt the play together and they’ve playing together for a long time even tho they’re all young guys..

    when it comes to arshavin, i see a pretender, maybe a trier.. he knows the standards of this team but he has no clue how to get there.. he tries little flicks, fancy passes, one-twos and fails consistently.. actually, the only time he’s effective is when he does what he did before arsenal.. run with the ball and shoot.. unfortunately for him, arsenal is not a counter attacking team.. we love having the possession and use set plays, not breaks.

    arshavin is a talented player but he’s not an arsenal player. and as tries harder to look like one, he sinks even deeper..

  72. HelsinkiGreg

    Tenerife Gerry my son you are spot spot on- exactly our problem – first time I have ever applauded Leeds – much less ability but lots more bollocks – I was just thinking how much I used to hate them in the 70’s when we had real men playing real football .- this tiipy tap crap is going to / has ruined our football – we had Frank Mclintock- we had Ian Ure – swe had Tony Adams – we had Stevie Bould- we had Keownthe monster – we had Peter fucking Storey – who have we got now ? Little Pixie Denilson – enough said – turn the light off – I’ll regain my passion when a) Wenger goes b) we geta British manager or Viera becomes manager

  73. Keith

    Denilson has had it, or should I say never had it, the blame lays at Wenger’s door, simple as that.

    By the way, I’m a new poster and in Thailand with the bear drinking beer!

    He sends his best!

  74. Russ

    I thought Eboue did ok yesterday and has vastly improved from 2 seasons ago. Song had an absolute stinker, especially in the 1st half – how many times did he give the ball away or get caught in possesion? I think he’s a sloppy player sometimes. Denilson did ok too, poor challenge for the penalty but he almost won the game for us were it not for an outstanding save. Just hope Wenger learns his lesson now and realises you just cant dump a load of squad players in an expect them to gel. He did it against Wigan and we dropped 2 points. Doubt he’ll learn though and it’ll be a similar 11 v Ipswich although I doubt they’ll be as hard to beat as Leeds were.
    P.S Walcott is a silly boy for admitting he dived. I thought it looked a pen. Don’t be surprised if the FA come sniffing round this issue as they love making an example of Arsenal.

  75. Tyrone Matthew

    right now JD is our best player he has been consistent in most of the games hes played. Samba just seems the logical signing hes a leader to start with,Arshavin has completly lost confidence, he would of buried that last season. He shud have a free role. everyone keeps going on about Bentdner and his saving us with crucial goals thats the Past and a tired story. A confident striker would of opened up with thats shot and could of gone anywhere. I dont buy the one foot theory, even messi scores with his weaker foot We have no strikers with pace Like Henry. Theres no one even close to him on his shittest days. as a centre forward who consistently scores goals u the league u shud look forward to these games. FA cup games are special occasions and we should never forget that. The good thing is we are still in the cup and I am confident we’ll beat them at E.R. Have a good day hope the reds beat the Manure today

  76. Fatai

    Why walcott thought he dived wen he was pulled is beyond me.JD surprises me everytime i see him on hw he has transform himself from dat below average right back to our most improved player

  77. Evan

    The Arsenal Squad breakdown

    1. I wish everyone would stop protecting Necklace Bender he is a terrible player. If he was as good as he & Wenger beleives then we would be saying he is just like Thierry Henry, can anyone honestly compare the two in any shape way or form HELL NO!! He has a terrible touch, he has weights round his ankles, my nana could run faster and she has departed (love you nan). He can’t take people on, next person to say that is guna get a back hander, He is a balldozer and not a good one, I understand fans wil say we need a big man upfront who can get headers etc plan B blah blah blah, but there are better centre forwards than him, i have a better touch than him.

    DENILSON: 100% squad player not good enough in the central role. I think he is a nice kid but that doesn’t win you a game. The penalty give away was so bad, shocking.

    CHAMAKH: Hard to knock a guy that has played very well for the 1st half of the season. He currently looks like a shadow tho, understandable tho being his first season, must be tired i’m sure we will be seeing much more of him.

    ARSHAVIN: I like him cheeky chappy and can be dangerous, but i ain’t seen him play a great game in a while, Wenger is right to put him on the bench, i’d like to see a reaction from him though, he needs a man of the match performance (fingers crossed)

    If we could get some £££ for him then it must be worth a look. I like the look of this Eden Haz Kid, i say snap him up wenger do it now, could make a big difference.

    WALCOTT: Still debatable, there is no doubt he turned the game, his pace is brilliant and sometimes his finish is exceptional, but decisions are still hit and miss. I like the fact Wenger played him upfront yesterday. He is the only player i think is save, just based on his potential, but i still expect big thinhs from him. Regarding the “I dived comment” honourable, nice guy, but it was a penalty and if that one wasn’t, then the one before was” And why apologise to Alex Bruce, he should have been sent off for studs showing on Chamakh. Leeds played well.

    Szczesny: I like this guy, he looks the business
    Squillaci: Awful
    Eboue: Squad player
    Djourou: Well done mate, your playing well

  78. David

    Spot on with comments but the fault lies squarely with Wenger, this is the fourth time this year he has swapped 7 or more players and we have come unstuck, you just cant make so many changes. All four players mentioned are weak, add them to a good side and you get away with it but not so many changes. Bentboy and Eboue should never put a Arsenal shirt on again. Wenger is supposed to be an intelligent man, how can he not see how bad they are.

  79. albo

    Gambon – 99% of the time I don’t agree with booing players. That said, someone needs to tell Arshavin that he needs to sort himself out, and we know wenger won’t do it, we also know the other players won’t cos wengers built this culture where no-one can criticize and no-one can shout.

    Again, I love this certainty that fans have that they know exactly what goes on in the dressing room and on the training ground. What an earth makes you think that Wenger won’t tell him to sort himself out? Or that ‘no one can shout’ at Arsenal FC (one of the most ridiculous statements I have read on here!) It’s laughable the things some people write with utter certainty when they can have no real clue about them…

  80. Pedro

    Welcome to Le Grove to all the people I just let on… I was at the gym, apologies for the delay.

    Oh, nice of you to ask, it was a great work out.

  81. Hitman

    Its worrying that with the business end of the season coming up our forwards have all lost form.
    We are also struggling to create clear cut chances. (which the foreards miss anyway).

    Agree with what has been said above – its clear to see Denilson, Arsh, Rosicky, Eboue, Bendtner weaken the team. But you cant play your best 11 all the time.
    I think Wenger realises that is squad is too weak to win the league but I dont think he is brave enough to buy the quality that is required. What kind of manager is that? Most other managers would be breaking the chairman door down demanding funds are released. We have an odd manager. Hence the fustration is not necessarily aimed at the players. Its not their fault Arsenal signed them.

  82. Jimbo

    I have to say, the player analysis is really, really poor today. I come to this place because Pedro and Geoff give honest opinions, not tired old internet-warrior cliches, but today I think that’s exactly what we got. A few examples of where I disagree:

    Bendtner – didn’t play that well, but wasn’t without one or two good moments either. Can understand why anyone would say he was poor, but cannot understand where this ‘bad attitude’ thing comes from – he was pushing for that goal the whole game, and worked his socks off. The substitution (i.e. taking Chamakh off) made sense – Bendtner was playing poorly, but still looked more dangerous than the totally impotent Moroccan donkey.

    Arshavin – again, not his greatest performance, but every single thing we created until Cesc came on went through him – he was the only player on the pitch capable of doing something to hurt the Leeds defence, and he did so on more than one occasion. Hyperbole and cliche again.

    Denilson – one player I absolutely detest, but must agree – he had a decent enough game in possession. He’s tidy on the ball, without actually being able to do anything that actually helps us score goals, but off the ball he’s been dire from start to finish (does he still rank up there in interceptions, or was that a one-season wonder that he’s still dining out on?). Suppose this is what was said in the original post, so cannot disagree here.

    Chamakh – has been dreadful for literally months, yet this blog (and all the others on the internet) continue to give him a free pass. Why is nobody able to objectively look at his performances, and instead hide behind his (ever worsening) goalscoring statistic? Normally his workrate is top notch, I’ll give him that, but he’s a spectacularly limited player – even Arsene has realised, but nobody on blogosphere seems willing to admit it?

    Rosicky – not normally one who gets away with it, but it seems he’s been left out for yesterday. A terrible performance, an attacking midfielder who cannot either score or assist? An attacking midfielder who can do literally nothing to create a goal? This guy is so, so washed up it’s untrue.

  83. kenyangooner

    @russ and fatal:feo referring to first peno incident not the 2nd that was rightfully awarded when pulled back by bromby.

  84. Jimbo

    And I don’t buy the whole ‘tiredness’ excuse for Chamakh – he’s been rested and kept out of the big games for a while now. There’s obviously more to it than that. He’s played for half a season, not like Cesc who played a whole season to burnout, then a WC, and is now being relied on again.

  85. Pedro

    Jimbo, your opinion of Nik B yesterday is clearly linked to your dislike Chamakh. No one slags the Moroccan off because he’s a top player.

    You’ve flown into a critique of the post… and most of it you’ve just agreed with.

    I defended Arshavin.

    I took Rosicky to task.

    I defended Denilson’s first half display.

    I hardly mentioned Chamakh mainly because he was given zero service.

  86. Jimbo

    And one more I left out – Gibbs. He had a stinker, Sanchez Watt had the beating of him far, far too easily until he went off.

  87. Danish Gooner

    What really gets me is Wenger selling Eduardo after his leg break, i think it was a huge mistake.Rosicky has been crocked forever and never brings anything to this team, whenever he plays.Yesterdays game was exactly the kind of game Eduardo would have thrived upon.

  88. Jimbo

    Pedro – he’s not a top player. He’s a shiny new signing, so he gets a free pass.

    Otherwise I agree with you. Don’t get me wrong, normally I think this blog gets it spot on, or at least is original and individual. But personally, I think there were too many internet cliches in there today.

  89. Pedro

    Well Jimbo, I’m not really sure I understand what you mean, I only read this blog and I only write what I see.

  90. AndyB

    Sorry, I can’t agree with your out of position argument for Bendtner. He simply isn’t good enough, has less commitment than Arshavin and he isn’t a team player. He needs to take his head out of his own arse. Personally I hope he gets fed up of being on the bench and fucks off.
    I know you will defend him by saying he scores goals, but fuck me, Jason (he’s got a pineapple on his head), Lee would get goals given the service he would get in this team.
    Denilson lacks concentration and makes silly mistakes, (see pen).
    Arshavin is wasted when playing with second rate players, he was better when Cesc came on, they have an understanding.
    The One And Only was superb in goal proving, once again, that he should be our no. 1.
    Eboue falling over every time someone looked at him was embarrassing.

    But hats off to Leeds they were excellent

  91. Pedro

    … and Chamakh is a top player. I’ve read your arguments and I’m really not sure where you’re coming from on that one.

    He’s not world class, but he’s an excellent addition to the squad.

  92. Jimbo

    AndyB – you see, I tend to agree, Jason Lee WOULD score goals in this team, but apparently that argument only applies to Nick Bendtner, not Marouane Chamakh – I don’t really know why though.

    And I don’t see where the commitment argument comes from. It’s a load of cliched bollocks. I agree, he didn’t play particularly well, but the reason I take today’s post to task is that it simply falls back on the same cliched crap that I read on every other blog on the internet, when normally I expect better from this place.

  93. Jimbo

    Pedro – what about his game do you think is excellent?

    He’s weak on the floor. He can’t shoot / won’t shoot. He’s good (but not brilliant) in the air. He works hard. To me, that’s a recipe for a mid-table striker, not a ‘top player’.

  94. sixx pac

    Can’t remember seeing Arsene being so definitive on a possible signing. He is always evasive and cautious. Seems to me that a deal is already in place with Lille

  95. Colonel Mustard

    Well said in the main article. This certainly shows that those listed should never be on a league match together. On Ardshavin, he is special but he does’nt get the love from Wegner thats for sure as he didnt find him in a weaved basket floating down the Congo. Ardshavin is a special special talent and its up to Wegner to get the best out of him. Positionally Nasri and Cesc play his usual role so sometimes he struggles. He is always positive with the ball and sometimes does’nt do the obvious but mark my words we cant afford to use him and Cesc in one season.

  96. Pedro

    Jimbo, he’s been sulking in training, he’s been sulking in the media and he’s reverted back to type on the pitch.

    It’s clichéd bollocks because you’re on a one man campaign against Chamakh.

  97. Jimbo

    Pedro – how do you know he’s been sulking in training? If he had been, do you really think Wenger would be picking him at the moment?

    And as for sulking in the media – how on earth do you interpret ‘I believe I’m good enough for this team, and want to prove it on the pitch’ as ‘sulking’? Sorry, but you’re really just clutching at straws.

  98. ruelando

    Some of you fans are really crap, you quickly remember the bad but never see the good the players do, the game should have been 4 – 1, base on the chances we had and good goal keeping saved them.
    Denilson, Arshavin, Bendtner and Rosicky had bad moments but they also had good ones and i will not say because i know you actually had seen them.My concern is that we are booing our players because of the mistakes they make, but when your favorite makes one you find all the excuses possible, if you are criticising be fair and mention what the individual did good also.
    WE are still in all competition, so lets get behind the boys

  99. Pedro

    Jimbo, he’s not weak on the floor at all. I don’t know where you get that one from… especially as you defend Bendtner who has a terrible touch.

    He’s had 55 shots so far this year compared to top scorer Berbatov’s 72. It’s also his first season and nearly all players need a year to adapt. 11 goals and 3 assists is not a bad return. Not to mention the penalties he’s won us.

    The fact his shiny and new has no affect on perception, ask Kozzer and Squillaci…

  100. bob

    While I often at odds with LG’s tone, this is great and constructive analysis and I learned and applaud it. Kudos.

  101. Cloud

    I really applaud the person who wrote this article, he is quite funny and damn honest, and i believe your write up beats a lot i’ve seen in most sites.I totally agree with your observation, and i most say that after reading about what you wrote about Ashavin i began to feel a bit guilty stricken, cuz after the game i felt like runnig unto the pitch and giving him a smack on the face. But in all fairness he did try and has tried this season,though be it not the best from him that we know.
    I wish i can be as bold as you to say the lot you mentioned above should be mixed(to some degree)with the first team,because,when those ”1st team” play now,i get the goose bumps i get when we were fearsome to watch.
    Having said all that,may i suggest some tell Theo to stop being a boy scout and notsay anything like admitting the dive,what was the point to that,its being done,its past,why admit,because believe me,when next he is triped,the ref will try being 100% sure before giving it cuz they dont trust him anymore. And one other suggestions for theo,i love his play ‘et all,but he should take a Ronaldo(R.Madrid) and learn some dribbling skills or from Bale(T.Hotspur)and learn how to get ahead of defender when one on one wit them,classic example is what Bale did with Maicon in the Champ. league.If he can utilize his speed well,instead of just running blindly at times,he will be unstopable.
    in closing the rest of the squad should take a cue from,’El Capitan Fabregas, Djorou, Young Wilshere, V.Persie(he is really putting in effort right now),Nasri(who i believe is carrying us right now), Fabiansky(who have really redeemed himself from the name Flapyanski),Sagna and Song(though when not paired with Wilshere can misbehave).The rest should step up please,so we dont have to go through another humiliating year without silverware.Pls,b4 i forget,Arsene should not try playing this 2nd squad against Leeds on the return leg,they will embarass us if he tries it.

  102. Big Dave

    Gibbs didn’t have that much of a bad game, their pen led to attacks coming down our right hand side where Eboue was defending

  103. Jaguar reloaded

    Jimbo has a point.Bendtner has all the reasons to be livid,when a player,who cant find open nets,plays ahead of Bendtner,who is by far a better player than the overrated Moroccan chamakh.

  104. Pedro

    Jimbo, I promise I didn’t just write those last two comments.

    Cheers Cloud and Bob, your comments are much appreciated.

  105. Jimbo

    Pedro – I don’t say Bendtner’s got a great touch, but he does have a better touch than Chamakh’s.

    Chamakh IS poor on the floor. His first touch IS weak, he doesn’t have the pace or skill to beat a man, and his passing is particularly poor. In tight spaces, he’s been weak for most of his time here (started off quite brightly), and anyone who presses him finds it fairly easy to win the ball. Bendtner ain’t great, but at least he has the ability to occasionally (and I mean occasionally, not regularly) beat a man. Bendnter, and I’m fairly sure the stats would back this up, but I don’t know where to find them, makes more passes, at a higher success rate, in more dangerous areas of the pitch.

  106. Rohan

    I do agree with the last part. Bendtner does make a lot more telling passes in the final third…his creativity and vision is underrated.

  107. Pedro

    Jimbo, I think Chamakh is far better on the floor than Bendtner and I think his overall link up play is better. I don’t agree that Chamakh can’t beat a man either, more of a perception thing than something you can quantify.

    If you want stats, go to the guardian chalkboards.

  108. Rohan

    even if it were “the fact that he’s shiny has no affect…”

    affect should still be effect given that effect is a noun in that sentence.

    What has come to these days,eh…you’re worse than JET.

  109. Jimbo

    Thanks Pedro – just went to the Guardian chalkboards – take a look at the Wigan game, for example, you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.