Finally, Arsenal vs Sunderland! | Wenger to buy players in Jan… yeah right!

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Good morning everyone! A very quick post today as I feel like I’ve written this preview about 168 times due to the total bore that is the International two weeks.

Yesterday saw one result go in our favour, United and Liverpool drew 1-1 in a game that I thought was pretty tame and lacking in quality. Steven Gerrard put the scousers ahead when he fired a low freekick through the United wall, shortly after, Chicarito headed a poachers chance past Reina. I appreciate that competing with United this year might be a little way off but catching Liverpool is well within our reach.

Luis Suarez has been accused of being a racist by world class muppet Patrice Evra. I’m not sure why you’d need to resort to racist comments to get under the skin of that idiot, but it’s a pretty massive thing to come out and say, it’ll be interesting to see if anything can be proved in that case, my guess is that it won’t. Nice mud-slinging Evra…

Arsene Wenger has been talking to the media outlets trying to build some confidence in his players. He reckons Mertesacker can become the new Tony Adams because he’s an intelligent player and he’s working on his aggression.

‘He said it was relentless (The Premiership). It is quicker than the football he is used to playing.’

‘But you can trust the Germans! He is adapting well. He is getting more aggressive. He is a very intelligent player and he will be a big asset to us. He is a little bit like Tony Adams. He is not one of the quickest but he uses his brain.’

I hope Wenger has that right, I think people are far too quick to write off players these days and I certainly think people have been too quick to write off the big German. He’s a great reader of the game and he’s come into a total shambles of a defence, it was always going to be a nightmare.

Wenger also thinks the rest of his signings are good, making the insightful comment that if your players lose games, people think they’re bad players. No sh*t Sherlock?

“People judge your buys quickly but I am happy with the buys we made. I’ve heard that Song is a bad buy, that [Thierry] Henry is a bad buy and over time they were not so bad. I’m not happy with the results but that is completely different.”

I’m not quite sure who the people were who said Thierry Henry was a bad player when he joined, regardless of his dodgy finishing, he came to Arsenal with pedigree and even when he was missing, he was doing it in electric style. Alex Song… well, Geoff still thinks he’s a bad player!

The coach did his usual just before Christmas statement of saying that if the two moons of Jupiter are correlated to the Star of Bergkamp, there’s a chance he could sign players in January. It’s standard that he has to say this even though we all know it’s not true… it takes the pressure off him and it allows people to say, ‘Look, I think he knows where he’s gone wrong this time and I’m pretty certain he’ll rectify it in January.’ I hold out zero hope of that happening.

I have no idea how we’re going to line up today, but it would be great if we could surprise Sunderland by starting the in form Park Chu-Young and dropping Robin Van Persie just deep of him. I doubt that will happen, so I’d imagine we’ll see a front three of Gervinho, Theo and Robin. In midfield, I’d be very tempted to give Benayoun a start. He’s a very good player and he’d certainly bring a little more spark to centre. Again though, if they’re fit, I’d say he’ll go for Song, Arteta and Rambo. At the back is the really tough decision, but I think Koscielny, Mertesacker, JD and Gibbs. In goal, the usual.

If Arsenal want to kick start our 5 game run with a bang, this is the chance. The team need to get the crowd on side, they need to show some fight out there and show they can be clinical in front of goal. A solid victory is what’s needed, not bumbling our way to a 1-0 win. Belief comes from dishing out a thumping, if we can’t do that to Sunderland today then we really should be asking questions of ourselves. Steve Bruce is getting very close to P45 time, it’d be a nicer Sunday if we knew we’d helped towards that, especially considering it’s Nik B’s club.

I’ll be heading up to the game today, hopefully we’ll have a great atmosphere today. This season, due to the total lack of expectation, I’ve found the ground a lot noisier and people in far better spirits. A continuation of that’d be marvellous!

[twitter-follow screen_name=’LeGrove’ show_count=’yes’]

P.S. I have a spare for the game, if you want to make an offer, call the number in the first comment on the site, he just wants to shift it.

728 Responses to “Finally, Arsenal vs Sunderland! | Wenger to buy players in Jan… yeah right!”

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  1. useroz

    we could’ve been buried if not our keeper… and seaman was right that the arsenal keeper should not be doing this sort of heroic so often …in every game

    to those AKB-ish folks, please not compare arsenal to sunderland and other mid table team expectation, we do pay our manager more than handsomely, and have the 4th highest wage bill

    if we are mid table we budget mid table …

  2. Radio Raheem

    In 2 weeks I think we’ll line up like this,


    Koscielny Mertesacker TV Santos

    Diaby Song Rosicky/Yossi

    Theo RvP Gervinho

  3. albo

    There are no certainties in this game, but all I would say is that I think, at the same age, Jack is the better player.

    Re touch and mercurial ability, I think there is a LOT more to come from Wilshere as he grows in stature and confidence. His performances at youth levels showed an ability to pick a pass, and to score goals that he hasn’t yet found at senior level. But for me that is more to do with him gaining experience and confidence at the top level, rather than an inability to replicate it at that level.

  4. albo

    I find it funny that we have been crying out for a keeper who would make the odd crucial save to win us an extra 5/10 points a season, and now we have one, people are complaining that we shouldn’t have to rely on the keeper to win us the 3 points…

  5. OPG

    Little bit embarrasing to cheer Newcastle they could be 1 point behind Chelsea 4 behind the leaders if they won haha.

  6. MatthewT


    I think its more to do with relying on the keeper against a shit team like sunderland that pisses people off. We were lucky to win today.

  7. skandibird

    ivorygoonz:; sorry she wasn’t there, but hopefully next Sunday, I’ll definitely ask her. What do you look like; are you gorge? 😉

  8. bade the gooner (bernard)


    To look at the bright side: WE are playing utterly shite, yet we’re “only” 6 points from 4th (but also only 4 points from relegation….)

  9. incesc

    “I have seen a few games over the weekend and I must say that of all the teams away from home Sunderland were 100 per cent committed, played with six midfielders and four defenders and fought for every inch on the pitch. I did not see many teams doing that yesterday so I believe that they deserve a lot of credit. They made life difficult for us.”

    this seems to be our unique ability to get the opposition wound up and playing well. they werent doing this until we let them back in.

  10. incesc

    and this is quite worrying:

    on Van Persie’s contract…
    It depends what you call commitment. For me commitment is not about how long you are at a club. As long as you are at a club you will give 100 per cent until the last day of your contract. That for me is what you call commitment. The length of a contract is completely different. For me you have players who have ten-year contracts who don’t give full commitment, and for me it is not about the length of a contract. He knows that we are ready to talk about it but the most important thing is today and how much you are committed to the cause as long as you are at the Club.

    on a new deal for Van Persie being the ‘ideal situation’…
    Unfortunately the ideal situation in football does not exist often. The ideal situation is that he extends his contract but if he doesn’t you have to respect that. You know what is important is that he plays like he plays because we are all here to see special football players and he is a special football player.

  11. bade the gooner (bernard)


    Marseilles even in a worse position than ours,

    10 games in the league so far, 1 wins, 6 draws, 3 losses, 10 points

    We made the same tally in 8 games!!!! 😆

  12. Lurch LeRouge

    yeah saw that, but i’m not reading too much into it because we’re supposedly incentivising the squad differently now, more results based rather than time with the club.

    so the managers going to be talking about commitment at every turn, because it makes it easier to justify not continuing to pay crazy wages to underperformers.

  13. bade the gooner (bernard)


    Yes, what in the meaning of getting the Arsenal Armband in the late few years…..

    I tend to believe the stories suggesting Robin won’t extend before January as he wants to see the club’s plans (which I can tell him already, to buy zilch)….

  14. incesc

    just looking at our fixtures and we need to be well into 4th spot before the last 2 games, chelsea and stoke away!


  15. bade the gooner (bernard)

    If Arsene could fall in his head, and wake up from the delusion mode, back to the good old days, that would be great, wouldn’t it?

    Shame isn’t so simple eh!

  16. IvoryGoonz

    Skandi: Im obviously gorgeous. 1m80. blue eyes. light brown hair. 😉

    Lurch: mm favorite french team yes, Arsenal still comes first, anyway, Marseille not doing great, just surviving, above relegation zone, more draws than anything, but going out of CL groups and staying in PL this year is the main target…

  17. Lurch LeRouge

    cheers IG,

    yeah I’m up to speed on Marseille’s general form but they still managed a result over Dortmund, my question had more to do with momentum rather than anything.

  18. bade the gooner (bernard)

    They have no momentum Lurch, I think the win vs Dortmund was their only one in the last few games……

  19. IvoryGoonz

    Lurch: last game was against Toulouse, tough defense as well, away.
    OM has played more tough games than Arsenal so far. and financially, they are not even in the same league.
    the french league is much more balanced, so I still have more confidence in Marseille finishing in their league higher than we will, although based on Marseille’s defence. they don’t leak many goals, and it’s just a matter of time before Gignac, Remy, Valbuena, and the Ayew Bros bang in the goals. with a lower attendance due to works for expanding the stadium, less money, getting the money from CL KO stage is crucial.
    not that much for us, while staying in the top 4 is an imperative, and we are well on the way to drop with the current form and focus.

  20. Lurch LeRouge

    its pretty embarrassing that our players have to say stuff like this. Kinda kills the mystique.

    “As for that house story, the house has been for sale for a while, but I’m not living on the streets or anything, I have found a really nice house, and yes, it’s in London! So I want to put that straight, I am committed, and I will show that on the pitch.”

    begs the question why Nasri never qualified his preference for nandos or subway?

  21. incesc

    more tough games than arsenal?

    we’ve played liverpool, newcastle, man united, tottenham

    4 of the top 6 teams in a harder league…

  22. IvoryGoonz

    incesc: and Marseille played the other of the top 3 away, Lille and Lyon. they played as well Auxerre, St Etienne, Sochaux, Rennes and Toulouse. 7 out of the top 10 clubs from last season.
    the only clubs of the top 10 of last season they havent played yet is PSG and Bordeaux… and they are above us in the CL.

  23. Gareth the Gooner

    Positives from today;
    – RVP
    – Spirit and commitment a lot better
    – Good attacking play bar 15 minutes when sunderland scored.
    – AA looked a different player when asked not to track back

    – Formation doesn’t suit players and is predictable
    – Gibbs injured again, can’t be used as a number 1 left back
    – Jenkinson, great spirit with potential but not good enough (yet)
    – Song played most of game ahead of Arteta, needs to be more discipline if being asked to play DM.

    Overal a win is a win but still problems and the Chelsea game is a worry

  24. incesc

    fair enough

    i dont really rate any of those teams over the likes of man u and liverpool but marseille certainly looked good vs dortmund.

  25. IvoryGoonz

    incesc: PSG is pretty much the Man City of France, and Liverpool, the Bordeaux. So I think it’s pretty even on that side. and knowing Arsenal’s potential, we should have done better than 2-1 at home against Sunderland.
    Jenkinson on Wednesday, Im not sure he’ll manage the whole game, and Im truely worried.

  26. Dave

    don’t know what has been said before, but I have just got home from the game and we are in deep shit with this side

  27. Gooby

    ———-song–jack the lad—–

    too late mr wenger

  28. OPG

    Cattermole probably should have buried that chance but then he’s only a midfielder, cross came in too easily and he was unmarked, very sharp keeping though bailed them out.

    Only realised Inter lost yesterday they are 17th with 4 pts they play Lille next, a good test for our friend Eden Hazard.

  29. gazzap

    Wenger is really pissing me off. Same players, same formation, same old shit. No Oxlade, No Coquelin even in the SQUAD – best two players in last game.
    There is no spark going forward. Little creativity, and when we lose it no heart to go and win the ball back. Today only Santos and Jenkinson showed any intention of winning back possession. everyone jogs about only making tackles when it happens to come within 2 yards of them. Its pathetic.
    Wenger needs to go because this isn’t about not having good players in the squad, its about player management, formations, making changes, and organising the team defensively.

  30. incesc

    its funny that arteta said he enjoys arsenal because they dont have to concentrate on stopping the opposition and just their own game.

    great attitude being passed down from the manager their

  31. David

    Funny how football divides opinion. I thought Jenkinson was absolute shyte. Worst player on the park by some distance.

    That includes Gervinho

  32. OnDGooner

    I think your comments re: Steve Bruce & his P45 irk me a lot as he is one of the few managers that respects Arsenal as a club. Sometimes you so want to impress your readers that you allow yourself to stray into uncharted waters. Here is a good example of it! Any person’s unemployment hurts me; more so that of one of the nicest blokes in football! Mind your language therefore Lord Grove!!!!!

  33. Socrates

    Hmmmm, just saw the post-match analysis showing how Rosicky doesnt look back after a free kick is taken against (him being in the wall) us siting our game aginst United and today’s game. They said that its important that he looks back to stay alert in for the second ball.

    This is all true but what the fuck….i dont think in all the years I have been watching football I have ever seen any analysis like that…particularly for the winning team and it had nothing to do with how we conceded the goal. Never really bought into the ‘Anti-Arsena’l media conspiracy but I’m beginning to have my doubts.

  34. Goon in 60 Seconds

    You have to wonder how much more of this Wenger is going to put up with. This is a man who fundamentally changed the English game, who introduced the world to some of the most entertaining and beautiful football and players we’ve seen in the past 20 years. Don’t forget, Wenger is also the one who tried to create a financially sustainable and competitive model for Arsenal in the face of financial doping going on all around him. And what does he get? He is now the manager for a Manchester City and Barcelona feeder club who shows up to work every weekend to watch a team that seems to have stopped listening to him. And for good measure, thousands of bald men with personality disorders sing about him being a p$%^$^ile. Seriously, life is too short and this is just a game.

  35. Goon in 60 Seconds

    I wonder how many comments there would’ve been on here if we had lost today, my guess is 1700 to 2000.

  36. Goon in 60 Seconds

    IvoryGoonz says:
    October 16, 2011 at 13:43
    could have opted for the pass to Gervinho or the right post though


  37. incesc

    i dont think its money with rvp, he’ll leave for trophies

    its a new team and he doesnt have time to stick around for them to grow and fail again

    shame really, us fans take a battering dont we

  38. kapslock

    Glad we won but fuck me we made a meal out of it. RVP is the only bright light in this bullshit team. That lob was something else. Genius. Jenkinson needs to be sent out on loan, Walcott hasn’t got a brain and Koscielny is fucking shit. Chezzer what a save, take a bow. His interview was hilarious as well. Legend in the making.

  39. Lurch LeRouge

    what did Kozzer do wrong exactly?

    they scored from a free kick, rather than open play if I’m not mistaken.

  40. kapslock

    He’s just not good enough imo. Played Sunderland onside a few times. We’re just generally shaky at the back.

  41. Lurch LeRouge

    thought he had an Ok game Kaps and was impressed with Mert, I need to watch the game again but didn’t think we looked that shabby at the back beyond Jenkinson’s calamitous turnovers.

    Dan Wheldon RIP crash.

  42. bade the gooner (bernard)

    I would be happy with draw away in the CL

    In the other hand, mind you we managed only 1 win in 6 away games this season (Udinese, QCL), @ draws and 3 losses……

  43. bade the gooner (bernard)

    We would probably finish top of our group if we manage to draw at Marseilles, and win our next 3 games….. (2 at home, Olympiacos away)

  44. OPG

    Bruce said he would attack us but started no striker and brought off Larsson their main set piece taker in 2nd half, a bit of reverse psychology?
    Pardew did the right thing and got rid of Barton it seems look at them flourish with no distraction atm, even Amoebi.