Arsenal go to Wales! | Arteta possibly injured | 1 Million comments this week

by & filed under News Review.

Bore da gyfeillion Le Grove.

That’s a big fat welcome in the good language of Welsh. Why? Because Swansea is in Wales and I want to celebrate diversity.

I’m looking forward to this afternoons game because we know Swansea will play an open game. They’ll try and hit us on the wings with their pace and they’ll certainly leave gaps. According to the stats, Swansea are more efficient at the passing game than United, Liverpool and Spurs. They might not be as adventurous, but a super stat all the same, top 4 stuff from a newly promoted team is testament to the excellent vision of career manager Brendan Rodgers. Another interesting stat for all the muppets that slag of the Premier League and its technical ability is that the Premier League is more effiecient than La Liga with accurate passing in the final third according to Rafa Benitez and his data analysts.

Today is a prime game for Theo to showcase why he’s the best player in the universe and it might even be a good game to unleash the raw talents of Oxlade-Chamberlain.

My gut feeling says that Wenger will go for experience over the folly of youth. So I’m expecting him to start Theo and Arshavin out wide… and possibly Thierry through the middle. It feels like the sort of game we should be resting Robin, trouble is, outside Thierry, all we have is risk. That said, he did take Park Chu Young off in midweek, so maybe we’ll get to see the explosive marketing talents of the Asian dream. We know he can finish because we’ve seen him score before. Question is, will he be able to handle the rough and tumble of the Welsh?

In defence, things are still looking about as promising as the French credit rating, so the midfield will have to muck in at the back. The wingers will also have to offer as much cover as they can. JD returns to the side, he certainly doesn’t need an invitation to play like a rusty nail. At left back, I’m guessing we’ll opt for Miquel, who looks like Pires, Benny and Rosicky all rolled into one. Let’s be honest… he’d make a marvellous Gooner paternity special on the Jeremy Kyle Show… my money would be on Bobby, the man oozes reproduction.

The centre backs will be Koscielny and Mertesacker. I’m pretty sure those two will deal with Swansea. In midfield, Ramsey, Song and Arteta will probably start again. I’m not sure when Arteta is going to land a rest… maybe when Diaby comes back? Which will be next season. Let’s hope he powers his way through another game… his experience in the middle is hugely underplayed at the moment.

Word has it that Arteta may have picked up an injury, so he’s rumoured to be out the line up. Who we slip into the middle now is a mystery. Kind of an ideal game for Frimpong. As he’s not there, things really do look precarious. Do we move JD from right back into the holding role and move Song forward. Do we move JD into the centre of defence, bring Yennaris in and play Koscielny in the middle of the park. Or do we slip Rosicky or Benyaoun into the middle and hope they give us the same stability Arteta does. I know our injuries are bad at the moment, but it’s not like we don’t have these same issues every year… we should have more players to call upon to deal with it. Instead, we’ll have to patch up the midfield with a damp, soggy plaster.

Wenger always tries to work through with the bare minimum and invariably, it always bites him on the arse. I’m reading the Alex Fynn book on making Arsenal a superclub. Great book, but reading the last 5 season back you end up bashing your head against whatever is nearest.  It’s ground hog day over and over again with the same pitiful excuses. It kind of worked at the start, apparently Wenger couldn’t play Theo for the first year we signed him because we couldn’t afford the initial first appearance fee. We also had to defer Robin Van Persie’s transfer when we first went in for him because we were skint. However, from January 2008, we’ve been caked in cash for him to spend. We had £18million to go into market with in 2008… and it’s roughly been the same or higher since.

The manager is complaining about the transfer window again and the pressure it brings…

“Everybody becomes nervous in November until January. Then players maybe think, ‘If I don’t play then I will leave in January’. They are already less committed to the cause, it gives them an opening.

“We have gone from a period where we knew if we didn’t play we had to be committed to the club, had no other option but to fight for the place.

This is true, but it’s not something we haven’t been aware of since 2002. Moaning on about how hard it is just feels like deflection tactics again, because interestingly enough, we can’t find players in the summer either. Now, we’ve either got a manager who has totally lost the ability to identify players or we have a broken scouting network. We could blame the board, but they seemed to pull it together quite nicely when Wenger was under pressure. Remember as well, the board when it comes to transfers is Gazidis. The rest are obsolete or figure heads.

Either way, it’s looking bleak for January action. As for Saad Al Mukhaini… what the hell is that all about? Wenger now seems to be going to comical lengths to be seen as the wizard of value… You’d have better chance of finding a good left back over Hackney Marshes.

I think the key today is our finishing. The team isn’t performing in front of goal at the moment and confidence is shot to pieces. The longer missed chance go begging, the less likely we are to break the deadlock… especially with players like Gervinho and Chamakh (oh I jest) missing. I’m confident it won’t come to that, I’m hoping that the Leeds game will spark a bit of inspiration in the rest of the side and I’d like to think we’ve been working on finishing over the last week.

We have a chance to push further ahead of Liverpool after another draw from them and we have the chance to catch two points on Spurs (well played Frimpong). Tomorrow isn’t about excuses and bitching about the conspiracy of referees, complimenting Swansea on being a major force in the Premiership or blaming injuries for our woes. It’s time to take the season by the scruff of the neck and kick it up the Arsenal. At the end of the season, only one thing matters… that’s points. How you get them or lose them is totally irrelevant. So let’s push on and make sure we seize the day.

Just to keep you up to date… we’re on schedule to have a new site up and running by the end of the month. I think it’s looking smart, and hopefully you will too when I let you loose on the BETA version in a couple of weeks time. A nice touch is that next week, it looks like we’ll break a million approved comments before we leave this home. We’re 2400 away from the magic number! If the millionth comment is from a London based Grover who goes to the game, I’ll buy you a Peroni before a pre match. If you’re based abroad, I’ll give you a lovely cyber high five! A million in a little over 4 years… very exciting, so a big thanks to everyone who has contributed to that number!

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

Right, enjoy your day, let’s be having those three points lads!

P.S. Take a look at Rambo’s appeal in the press for a missing man.

917 Responses to “Arsenal go to Wales! | Arteta possibly injured | 1 Million comments this week”

Jump to comment form ↓

  1. Doublegooner

    2008, 2009,2010,2011,


    Wenger the skin flint will mess up again.

    Leaving for Swansea shortly, not confident, buy ready for a long day out !

  2. gazzap

    If Arteta is injured, I think Ramsey could be asked to play a bit deeper while either Rosicky or Benayoun play in the more attacking midfield role.
    Dont see the Ox being involved. maybe as sub at best. wenger has something against him.

  3. Rohan

    Apparently Frimpong was blowing kisses to the Spud crowd. haha, what a legend that young man is..

    It’d be absolutely fantastic if he somehow made it.

  4. kwik fit

    Watching sunday supplement.. the guys are speaking about dangerous tackles and how such tackles could be another ‘Ramsey’ or ‘Eduardo’.
    Why do these things always happen to Arsenal?

  5. Lurchlerouge

    Stick my peroni in the post!

    Been AWOL, we’d have made a million already if fucking BT would sort my new orifice.


  6. Rohan

    I’d play Ox in midfield and start Henry and Theo on the wings and tell Ramsey to stay back and hold the fort with the creative genius that is Mr. Alex Songinho.

  7. incesc

    “So Mikel Arteta makes more tackles, wins more duels, creates more chances & has scored as many goals as Yaya Toure. Underrated? “

  8. incesc


    miguel mert kock yennaris

    ——–song ramsey———

    walcott ashavin henry/ox


  9. Paul geddes

    We could go song play deep,Arshavin play in the hole behind the strikers where he has been dying to play since fab left,walcott on the left And the ox on the right with Henry and van p up front and go back to a classic 442,that would counter their passing game have speed on both wings which would mean Henry and his ‘football brain’ would play a position game rather then having to leg it the whole match and be knackered after ten minutes! Arshavin has been picking up the last few matches and to be picked as the play maker would really give him buzz, arteta needs a break even if he is fit and although ramsey is probably mad to play in Wales,he has looked a bit fatigued/unlucky/off the boil,or something in The last few weeks and we need to do something to break our terrible goal scoring record of the last month or so.. p.s this Is my first time posting here,but I read le grove every day 🙂

  10. Rohan

    Arteta’s a boss. He’s shown what Wenger has perhaps been guilty of in the past. The value of premiership experience.

    If anyone wants a bit of a laugh.

  11. Lurchlerouge

    That’s mental Rohan, you want to ruin our only impact player by running him ragged in a position he’s not fit for purpose?

    We need him more against united, a 20 min cameo should be more than sufficient today.

  12. ml

    absolute must win today.

    still cant understand why we havent got a full back in as cover. wenger said it would be a shame to drop points because we didnt bring anyone in. hhhmmm Fulham,

    anyway sawnsea, seemed to be buuilt up to be the new barcelona. we should go there and turn them over. When spuds played them they should have been 3 up at half time.

  13. Geoff

    Morning all, it’s 17 degrees here! Nice post Pedro.

    Wenger is no longer a football manager, he’s trying to prove by trialling someone from Oman that he can do it on a shoestring.

    Not because of lack of funds, but to cop a bigger bonus.

    We lost Cesc and Nasri because of that, he learns nothing and we’ll lose Robin next.

    I can buy we have no money, but by spending the money we get for players we lose should be mandatory.

    I think he’s an anal man with obsessive compulsive tendencies and he probably line up his pens on his desk.

    That’s why he only sends subs on at 67 minutes and not when we need them.

  14. Lurchlerouge

    At least the Durka Durka left back should be good at throw ins, being used to throwing rocks and petrol bombs from a young age he might have a DeLap quality?

  15. N7 Gunner

    incesc, like that line up – ramsey can do the leg work while arshavin gets his chance to be creative – esp with Henry’s and Robin’s movement.

  16. Arsenal

    So sick of Wenger the senile’s excuses for not buying, and a bunch of mindless gooners lowering their expectations to what he wants them to be. Well anyways, hope our little patched up side can take on the mighty Swansea (in all credit to them they are fantastic to watch and are an enjoyable team). If I’m completely honest, I don’t think we’ll manage more than a draw.

  17. MQ

    I believe Arteta and wife might be expecting a baby any moment as I remember a twitter picture at News Year Eve party???

    Anyways why do we wear our home kit away when Swansea wear all white kit clash?

    Anyways! Gunners 3 to nil today.

  18. Gooby

    3 points well get us further away from pool adn closer to spurs, we have to get them.

    i think rosicky will play today

  19. incesc

    wengers comments on players not being committed if bought in january is just testament to the players he goes after.

    think he is nuts, competely lost in his own little world like geoff says.

  20. Foreheadinho

    Wish you were picking the team Incesc. Would like to see Ramsey play deep and Ox play on the left with Arshaving in the hole. More likely Arshaving will be on the left and Rosicky at CAM (would prefer to see Benny given a chance at CAM in that scenario). Henry off the bench is the best option for him, in the 67th minute perhaps?

  21. Hasaucha

    1. Arsenal offer trials to many players from all over the globe..More than 90% of them don’t impress enough..So,i don’t get the fuss about that Omani kid..All clubs do that..Its cheap of Wenger to be going for an unknown player but if our fullbacks weren’t injured,you wouldn’t even have heard about that player..

    2. Today’s going to be a tough match..If we waste our chances,we’ll be punished and they have a top keeper too..If Arteta doesn’t play,i’d drop Ramsey deep and bring in Rosicky..Benny on the wing due to the cover he gives to the young left back..NOT AT ALL POSITIVE ABOUT TODAY !!!

    3.Frimmers had a decent game..Yet again,he got booked for a poor challenge and got himself into trouble..I seriously believe,the kid can crack it at the highest level..He’s had good games against LFC,Citeh,Chelsea and even spuds which suggest that he can play at the highest level..But his decision making is poor..Also,the kid loses his cool too many times..I hope the experience at Wolves helps him..If he doesn’t make it for us,he has no one to blame but himself..

  22. Rohan

    It’s a call between him or Arshavin. I’d like to see whether Arshavin could build on his last performance.

    How the fuck did the big German get ill? jeez.
    I hope to god Wenger doesn’t start Djourou and Squid as CB’s and shunt Laurent Maldini to RB…

  23. Match

    Wenger has been performing miracles. From whatever years to 2008 Arsenal was deadly broke.

    Could any team in the League or the world have moved to a new spanking $300 million stadium without some rich daddy paying for it and stayed in top 4, champion league final, semi final, carling cup final. Just name one club … just one club in world football.

  24. nuudles

    morning, if the Mertesacker & Arteta rumours are true I think we will line up as follows:

    Alternatively Oxo or Henry could start on the left wing but I have a suspicion it will be Yossi because of his higher defensive workrate and Yennaris (or JD if Per can play) and Miquel will need cover because Swans’ wings are quick and can be dangerous.

    Also Frimpong had a decent match, had a very goog opportunity to score on the volley, difficult but would have been awesome if it went in!

  25. Pedro

    Match, no doubt that was his best achievement.

    He still disbanded his Invincibles side too early though… and that wasn’t to save on money, it was because he thought players were dead at 30.

    That was his mistake then… he still worked wonders in those years though.

  26. Hasaucha

    And no fucking Arshavin in the hole…LOL

    Swansea keep the ball well;we need someone who works hard to get the ball back and who keeps the ball well himself..I too like to see Arshavin play there but today is not the day..We need to capitalize on the slip up of LFC/spuds..Need to start another winning run..

  27. Rohan

    In other news, how shit are Liverpool.. All that money spent (not only under Dalglish but under Podgson and Benitez) and they’re going to be overtaken by Newcastle today and sit in 7th.

    Carroll, Downing and Henderson for a combined 75 million is ridiculous.

  28. Match


    Arsenal can roam the whole galaxy … if they dont have money to compete now days against chelsea, real marid, barcelona, man united. Even the kids … 12 years old.. Arsenal will only get the second best 12 years old kids….

    Arsenal has been buying youth ,,, but their youth are second rated …

    People make a fuss why Wenger didnt pay that extra $1 for Ronaldo and Man United took him from Wenger’s nose. Well… Arsenal didnt even have money to pay out Van Persie …. There are lots of in and out and stuffs that goes on in the clubs people dont know about.

  29. Match


    All managers make mistakes. Wenger is a human being and he made mistakes and will continue to make mistakes. He dismantled the invincbles because

    1. Rich clubs came with big money offers for the players. They players got big big salary increases at other clubs

    2. YES Wenger believes that physically players ”especially the strikers who are over 30 .. they are not as sharp.

    3. He made millions of dollars for the owners of the club.

  30. kc

    Just curious, how much was too much for Cahill if Chelsea is purchasing him for only 7 million? Cheapskate Wenger can’t just buy talent, he has to get credit for the discovery. If the man wants to be a scout, make him a scout already. There is nobody that can tell me we don’t a new quality defender this month. And there is a British born quality CB about to go to Chelsea for less than we payed for Santos!?! WTF?!?!

  31. Hasaucha

    The Asian players getting trials at big clubs is on the rise..Indians trialing at Benfica,Omani at Arsenal and so on..Even Bayern award trials to many youngsters from Asia..You don’t hear about all of them..

  32. nuudles

    Rohan, Lpool seem to think that spending a lot on a player equates quality. Carroll and Aguero cost about the same. Mata cost a bit more than Downing…

    If Suarez is ever back and he starts to find the net (which he did with great success at Ajax) and they add one decent winger and one proper creative mid they can still be a top team. They have become quite solid defensively. I think they were wrong to let Aquilani go, they should not have tried to change him so he fits their style, they should have adopted their style to suit his strengths because I rate him in the same class as Silva, he was just out of form and asked to play a style which does not suit him.

    I agree with you it is massively funny though…

  33. Match


    Liverpool will need to spend far more then that amount of cash they spent during the summer if they really want to be in top 4.

  34. gambon

    Kwik fit

    They don’t only happen to arsenal, you just notice it more.

    Its like all these retards that love saying utd always get penalties and we never do.

    They go quiet when they realise we’ve had 5 more than them in the last 10 years.

  35. Walking Wounded

    Wenger’s comments about the transfer window are fine, except the two best fit players for what we are lacking in the side are Cissokho, who has played every game this season and Podolski who is having his most prolific season. Is this another Wenger smoke screen?

  36. gambon


    Stop looking at the fucking past.

    I agree with everything you’ve said about pre emirates move, but it counts. For nothing.

    Business is ruthless, wenger is no longer up to the job, therefore he should be sacked.

    Anyone that thinks 2004 was a better achievement than 98 or 02 isn’t thinking right.

  37. finestcuts

    Good Morning chaps and ladies, It feels like a proper away day to me as I’m on the bus off to meet some Poznan based Gooners. Even though Swansea are a footballing team, if they try and outplay us, they don’t stand a chance so we have to expect them to play for damage limitation and they’ll be looking to capitalize on set plays. Arteta out shouldn’t be a problem, Benayoun has plenty of experience of playing behind the playmaker. Will Wenger go “Old School” and play 4-4-2 and play Henry + RVP up front? That would be a pleasant surprise. Predicton = Swansea 1 Arsenal 4

  38. singaporeangooner

    I think Wenger is too conservative. He has the money, and at times we have seen he has the backing of the chairman, but he is just reluctant to splash money around.

    It is good in one way, but in the short term it really hurts the club. The upside of such cases normally is the strong academy a club might have, producing young talent year after year (like dortmund) but Arsenal lacks it as well (to some extent), having to buy Oxo from Southhampton and Jenkinson from league 2. Very few players come from our own academy. And if you have a talent raised from your backyard, chances are he’ll be more committed to the club (thankfully, like Wilshere). But having seen Ade, Nasri, Cesc leave already from Arsenal, I don’t think this route makes sense, especially in the PL (where there is an money crazy bastard ruling Manchester City and a Russian Tycoon willing to snap up the best players at exorbitant costs).

    I think either Wenger should offload and spend money, or may be hire another assistant who can see what’s going on and adapt in the transfer market. Too much conservatism won’t lead you anywhere in the short term…

  39. Gooby


    that’s why king kenny is SMART!

    funny thing is that liverpool fans can’t admit he got it wrong and after a few signs of improvement last season they went back to usual mediocrity.

    7 draws out of 11 at home is very poor considering their ambitions.

  40. dennisdamenace

    Finest – 5, 6, 7 years ago i would agree with your assessment, but this is AFC 2012, the same AFC 2012 that folded like a deck of cards away to Fulham.

    Don’t make away to Swansea sound like a given fella.

  41. Dream10


    Agree with you. this is not a walk in the Park. If RVP does not start we need to win 1-0. We will find a way to concede.

  42. vladiziv

    even if Arteta is not injured (and certainly hope he is not) think he should be rested for ManU..
    he practically played every game..

  43. dennisdamenace

    D10 – The whole team is an unbalanced fuck-up.

    Years of non-investment, coupled with sticking with perennial underachievers or and perennial crocks has meant so many square pegs in round hole, a make do attitude that has cost us time and time again over the past four/five years.

  44. Zorr0

    Anyone see those muggy cunts at the lane try to contest the drop ball in the wolves box that the ref gave when the keeper and cb collided and needed treatment. The ref was a twat, but greedypaywhore contested the drop ball! Wankers!

  45. Goon from BD

    I got a bad feeling about this game. I hope that Arteta inury is bullshit and the Per one too. But RvP is back after a rest so should be sharp. Swansea……..whenever I’ve seen them play they looked like the best organized team in the whole league.

  46. Goon from BD

    *but their striker is shit so the thick fucker JD shouldn’t have a problem if played CD but I get the feeling we are gonna start Squid. Worried about their wingers and their defense is tight like a cunt. RvP may need some olive oil.

  47. Gooby


    bench: flappy, squillaci, beny/rosicky, ox, henry, park, angha

    if arteta and mertezaker are out, we can’t expect much better than that.

  48. incesc

    my guess is he’ll come off the bench

    blimey, just had a look, theyve only let in 4 at home all season, equal with citeh

  49. azed

    the dude from Oman aint a kid, he’s 25!!!!
    People on here seem to have forgotten Squid is still an arsenal player, i’m just hoping he too is sick

  50. LeMassiveCoq

    Sorry to be a doomer…but my prediction is that we will lose today, or maybe scrape a draw. Swansea have got one of the best home records in the EPL.

    My heart hopes we win, but my head tells me otherwise.

    Wenger out.

  51. incesc

    theyve got a good home record for the mid table clubs, but come on, we have to go to the san siro soon, we should be winning this

  52. incesc

    no idea jamal

    as other people have said, walcott should get some space at last today, i fancy him to score small pitch or not.

  53. Foreheadinho

    Cahill has been running down his contract KC. He or his agents have got greedy in the knowledge that he will be payed a signing bonus and increased wages on a free. Bolton are now desperate to sell him for anything they can get. Chelsea will be paying ridiculous wages for Cahill who will have been holding out in the knowledge that in a few months he would get better personal terms. We don’t want a piece of that and Mert was exactly what we needed not Cahill.

  54. Bade

    Swansea far from being the ball possession kings, so we can easily play Song, Rambo and Yossi in the middle, if it’s true Arteta is injured.

    Can any Grover approve whether Arteta is in the squad or not

  55. Bade

    Two line-ups, one with Arteta fit, the other without;

    With Arteta




  56. Bade

    Why Henry?

    1) He wants to play, we have only for another 9 games.
    2) He’s a true threat, he can inspire the team, and surely he’ll be petrifying the opposition, he has so much presence (oh dear, Marouane)
    3) we can rest RVP which is good
    4) I know he had a rest already, but Robin is the true super-sub if needed

  57. Bade

    I won’t say a bad word about our nutty manager only due to my strict matchday policy, otherwise……. **** **** *** ******* ******

  58. Bade

    I said before Swansea weren’t the possession kings, in the other hand we should remember Fulham weren’t as well, and they battered us for the last 45 minutes…. So we should not tolerate complacency

  59. terry

    jd– kozzer– pet– miquel
    —-song—- ramsay

  60. Bade

    Who’s in the squad?

    Another keeper
    2 of Squillaci/Yennaris/Arteta?

  61. Bade

    Feel like AA23 and Theo we be lifted high from King Henry’s inclusion in the starting line up

    Time to kick a big away win ….. Like we had against Wigan back then.

    Remember? we used to score more than 1 goal …… and this afternoon we’ll quadruple the Swansea’s ……

  62. Foreheadinho

    Rosicky has the same virus as Per. Hopefully Per will play but Benny could play CAM instead of Rosicky. Any more word on Arteta? Hope he is playing, we will need him for his workrate and cover against a good football team. JD vs Sinclair is the biggest worry.

  63. Harry

    Id go for:


    Yennaris Mertesacker Koscielny Miquel

    Song Ramsey

    Walcott Arshavin Chamberlain

    v.Persie (c)

    BENCH: GK; Djourou; Benayoun, Rosicky, Ryo; Henry, Park

  64. Bade


    Are you kidding? We’re trying to persuade Arsene to make his subs other than the 67 minute, and you’r suggesting a change in formation??

    If Arsene does change formation, be sure someone kidnapped his whole family and asked him to do so to keep them alive. Other than that, I really don’t see him doing it

    Though I’m calling for a 442 for ages now …..

  65. Bade

    Cheers Pedro

    So mine @ 12:23 will be without Arteta, and with Yennaris and Squillaci….. Maybe Park for Ryo too….

  66. tippitappi

    all quiet on the transfer front by the arch transfer pacificist wenger , can’t see more than a very tough match maybe 2 1 to us but a draw or defeat won’t supprise either I don’t expect so much these days maybe Henry will preoccupy them a bit put them out their stride phase them a bit you never know , god how has it come to this

  67. ritesh

    I hope Henry will kick Arshavin and make him run hiss ass off.

    I liked the celebration, it was like he was pissed off with the others for being so crap.

  68. IvoryGoonz

    Maybe if fuckin Wenger wasn’t propagating a philosophy that avoids him telling the truth, fans would be more informed.
    It’s like his new joke on the winter transfer window, that window is to help managers who made too many mistakes during summer, and give them another chance to get it right.
    What does he complain about? Players’ motivation reduced? WTF
    At the end of the day, If you listened to Wenger, the ball should be square because the goal is.
    I’m fed up of all his media avoidance shit.

  69. IvoryGoonz

    Pedro: ref Mert, dont think it’s a rumor, i believe that Wenger said it in his press conference yesterday.
    Virus I think like Rosicky.