North London derby eve…

by & filed under News Review.

I’m not really sure how many different ways there can be to preview a game, but I feel like I’m touching on variation 14.6 this morning.

Statistics are flying around the web today around how good our defensive record away from home has been this season. To be honest, the fact Steve Bould has come in and we’ve the 3rd best record in the league is quite astonishing… not because that is born out of great defending, more because it seems like the rest of the league have become worse. I don’t have the stats to back that up… but seriously, our defence is far from sound yet we seem to be defying logic with stats that stack up.

Tomorrow we head over to the lane for a massive game. North London Derbies don’t accept form as a guage for the outcome. So this puts us in a hugely advantageous position because like our defensive record, our form looks good on paper… despite the reality of it being far from incredible.

As a fan, I’m looking for a number of things tomorrow… but in the main, I’m looking for a performance, because I can count on one hand the amount of times we’ve played this year and turned in a shift. We haven’t been owning games in the way we used to. There’s always a fracture in the set up somewhere, I’d generally say that’s come from having an impotent midfield. On paper, it looks great, on the pitch, I’m just not sure we’ve managed to find the right balance this  year.

The big games need to come from Theo and Giroud up top. Grioud has the potential to cause all sorts of defensive problems for Spurs… combined with the pace of Theo and we could see an interesting game. Theo and Bale come from the same place, one is being tipped for Madrid… the other is still having his massive contract questioned. I’m hoping that serves as a motivating factor for our boy tomorrow. Stats wise, I think Bale just passed him… but tomorrow presents a good chance for the reverse to happen. Theo, regardless of how well he develops will never have the factors that make Bale such a tantalising prospect… i.e. height and power. However, that doesn’t mean he can’t be hugely effective in a tight north London derby tomorrow.

The biggest performance tomorrow is going to have to come from Wilshere in the middle of the park… if he can bring his a-game to the table, you always fancy our chances. He just needs to keep his discipline in check… I suspect Spurs will be on the wind up tomorrow and I suspect there will be a red card. Goals though… you can’t help but think this will become another goal fest.

Anyway, should be super exciting. Sit back and enjoy the other matches today… keep em’ crossed for West Brom!

212 Responses to “North London derby eve…”

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  1. Cesc Appeal

    Yeah he’s a partner in it, the trio was him, Alisher and David Dein.

    I doubt it’s anything to do with Usmanov, he’s a smart businessmen and that’s too risky

  2. Marko

    It could be Moshiri and others willing to buy the club and do business with Usmanov. Say what you like about Usmanov he knows good business

  3. Cesc Appeal

    Nows the time for fans to put extreme pressure on Kroenke, Kroenke out banners and signs, just like Chelsea are doing for Benitez…might be tempted to take the £850 Million offer and run back across the ocean to buy up some other poor unsuspecting club

  4. Gooner63

    Well if the Arabs take over, gonna make it an interesting summer.

    Will need whole new sections on there own for Arsenal transfer rumours on Sky and BBC.

  5. jeffozgooner

    hearing about this arab take over gives me mixed feelings, if it happens we compete again, keep our players, buy better ones and we become like Chelsea, utd and city we lose our identity and our soul

  6. Daniel

    We lost our soul when we lost 8-2 to our once rivals and then sold them our captain and best player a few months later.

    What are we waiting for, to lose Wilshere as well?

  7. Dannyboy

    jeffozgooner – embrace it my friend, as I am afraid our identity and soul was ripped out by Wenger 8 years ago!!!

  8. Cesc Appeal

    Danny

    Yeah exactly, we’re either faceless Super Club backed by multi billionaire’s.

    Or

    Faceless mediocre club who’s a mad Frenchman’s pet project and a gutless Yank’s cash pot

  9. paul mc daid

    Stan has a bid in for ” The Outdoor Channel ” in the states,maybe he needs the money,hope so,hope he takes Wenger,Ivan the Wank and PHW with him,WE DONT NEED THEIR KIND HERE.

  10. VIX AFFAIR

    This so-called Arab Takeover,is absolute bullshit…

    You don’t understand,the AFC Propaganda machine,is in overdrive..Geez…

    Everything to deflect away from our dire performance’s over the last 7 year’s & the pig hungry geriatric’s at the tiller,cashing in,on your hard-earned money..

    Leak’s of a David Villa signing,amongst other signings’s in the past:
    Demba Ba
    Lloris
    Vertoghen
    Cahill
    Hazard
    Mata
    Samba
    Reina
    Schwarzer
    Alonso
    Kaka
    Benzema
    Ozil,etc,etc..

    Along with the new Bergkamp Statute..(love the guy)..But come on!!

    Now fucking Sheikh Money,ahead of the NLD..?!!

    What next..?

    Tony Blair ,replacing Lady”Cow-Nina-Bracewell Smith” as Vice-President..

    & having a Co-Title as “Peace Envoy to the Disgruntled Fans”

    Piers Morgan,being invited onto the BoD
    As PR Guru..(for the gutter press worshippers)?

    Will Stan Sell?
    No……

    Why not..?

    He want’s to pass his portfolio,to his son,to eventually takeover..

    Name one sporting franchise,SS has sold over 10 year’s…?

    Name one..?

    This Club,is really a fantastic joke..!!

    PS

    I really hope Spurs do us tomorrow..

    Maybe,the truth will finally out..!!

  11. Arsenal 1886-2006

    If this is bullshit fed to certain board friendly journo’s (personally I do not really know either way) and a PR stunt ahead of ST renewal then it is a very dangerous game to play. Any fragment of trust between the board and the increasingly vocal and dissenting sections of the fanbase will be completely destroyed.
    Never a dull moment in Goonerdom.

  12. VIX AFFAIR

    Arsenal1886-2006

    It’s the lowest of the low,by the Club..

    All designed to shore up,their ever-dwindling fanbase..

    It’s rotten…I hope Spur’s do us one..

    Then we will see,how potent the Arab takeover deal,has any weight,or credence?!!

  13. bay area gooner

    Fellas

    If this news is true, then it would be incredible. What it does, is force Usmanov to bid against the Arabs or join them. Ultimately, Kronke will accept. He is not into Arsenal for anything but investment. Im also very interested to see how this affects AW. He might step down as this new takeover would compromise his morals. HE will be the biggest Hyp if he stays. I say get rid of him if this does happen

  14. VIX AFFAIR

    Bay Area Gooner

    The news of a takeover,is pure propaganda..

    Pure& Simple….Stop creaming yourself…!!

  15. VIX AFFAIR

    The so-called takeover,is the biggest joke of the Century.

    I’ll remember to include that one,in my list of AFC’s litany of statement’s over the year’s,that in a nutshell surmises..

    “I’ll Screw The Fans To Kingdom Come”

  16. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    Only a story is Stanley contemplating selling. He knows he could sell to Usmanov any day he wants and make a hefty profit. He has not done so so why should he do it now?

    In other news: reports reaching us that Stan Kroenke has spoken his first words. His mother proudly said.. “he uttered something like.. Dadaaa..Dadaa”

  17. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    OK chumps…

    It’s NLD day…. Let’s have no talk today of wishing the AFC to lose now.. (keep it to yourself today). I don’t care if we are competing for 3rd-4th spot or 15th-16th spot. We must beat those cunts and rejoice and give thanks to the football gods.

    What will be will be if we win or lose.

    . If you can’t get on your feet and punch the air as the ball hits the back of the fucking spuds net you need to have a little think about life! 😉

  18. Jeff

    No, I’m with the sceptics on this one. There are two huge “ifs” here and the first is whether or not this is true: if it is true, whether or not Kroenke would sell.

    One thing troubles me though. There was no need for the press to put a time frame on it. They said “within two weeks”. In the world of news and predictions putting a time limit on something is a huge “no no” unless you are absolutely certain of its veracity. So that alone is a bit strange and provides 1% of hope that it might be true.

    Given that, I am 99% sceptical and therefore do not think there is any danger of Kroenke leaving us any time soon. Sorry but I need more proof than a press article that appears out of the blue just before the derby and a couple of days before we go out of the Champions League. I think we’ve been there before (as Vix says) with sensational stories about bidding for world class players just as the season ticket renewal period approaches. Perhaps they’ve finally understood that nobody actually believes the promise of stars anymore so they’ve decided to try a different angle and at the same time make Usmanov look like a conniv ng, scheming scoundrel.

  19. Jeff

    Plus I forgot to mention that April fools is not too far off and coincides with when this is meant to happen.

  20. Jeff

    Of course if such a bid was to take place it goes without saying that Wenger would have no further part to play at AFC. What a delicious thought! Just the idea of it fills me with glee. Can you imagine how it nice it would be to no longer have to put up with his insufferable verbiage about “mental strength” and “50,000 substitutions”? In the famous words of Robert Robinson “would that it were, would that it were”.

  21. TheBayingMob

    Takeover is billshit. I’ve never heard more if it in my lifetime, oh, apart from when that whore screamed “you’re so good, you’re so good, you’re so big”. It’s NLD day, lets get it on.

  22. Higz

    I can’t really see much benefit of arsenal camp making the story up. It would just make fans want the current regime out even more. Unless stan has finally had enough and wants to force usmanov into action.

    Obviously we all hope it’s true, but at this stage it is just gossip and it probably is just rubbish. It’s probably that Arab owner who took over Pompey but had no cash at all ha ha.

  23. jeffozgooner

    my nerves are starting to jingle already about tonights game. I think we can win it. Then I hope they dont embarrass us, then i think this whole buy over thing is a conspiracy to unsettle this. COYG

  24. Jeff

    The other thing is of course that by perpetrating the selling of the club to Kroenke, the scheming boogiemen at the top (such as PHW) have ensured that no bid from rich Russian or Arab owners will ever make it past the door. Kroenke would have to go broke before he sells. I don’t think even the prospect of making a cool £400m would entice him into selling. He just doesn’t do it and that is exactly why he was chosen and on top of all that I believe there is a gentlemen’s agreement that SS will stay to the bitter end or pass AFC it onto his benefactors.

    If this bid is true and SS rejects a 20k per share offer, it will confirm the death nell for Arsenal.

  25. Nasri's Mouth

    @Jeff

    If there was an ‘agreement’ in place for Kroenke not to sell to Usmanov, it could well be down to Fiszman rather than PHW.

    To stop Dein getting his hands on the club.

    As for the Arab bid. There might be some truth in the story, IE, the papers haven’t made it up completely, but it’s more likely someone sounding out whether Kroenke might sell. I don’t think it’s the work of the club. I think it might be the start of a campaign from Usmanov.

  26. Moray

    This “offer” has Usmanov’s fingerprints all over it. Perhaps he is positioned to reach the magic figure to open up the books (I believe it was 30%?) and wants to start pressuring SS now that the poor performance this year is leaking blood into the water?

    Kroenke seems to have little interest in Arsenal, or in soccer at all, so he would be stupid to pass up a 400m profit on a mid term investment. He could buy up Spuds or Villa or something and run them into the ground instead, if he wants to own a club without providing any input.

  27. Arsenal 1886-2006

    Reading some of the comments in the papers and it seems some folks are wrongly assuming that new owners (if the story is true) would throw money in like city and chelsea, i do not believe this would be necessary.
    The money generated from the stadium and an increase in commercial deals, couple this with the stadium debt being cleared and a clear out of the deadwood draining the already large wage bill and we would not need to see the sort of debt levels accrued by others, we could still be self sufficient by being run in a more efficient and ruthless (regarding the squad) manner.

    We are a global name and we have the infrastructure in place, we are not in the position chelsea and city were in when they had to spend heavily just to get known.

  28. Jeff

    Moray/NM,

    I can see the logic behind Usmanov trying to get ownership by the back door (i.e. fronting a fake consortium that ultimately he might be controlling) but it’s all a bit “cloak and dagger” isn’t it? We are talking about a football club and not some large defence company.

    For me, escorting AW off the premises is the first thing that needs to happen. I think a different manager with fresh ideas could do a lot better with £145m wage bill and whatever transfer funds we have in the kitty. But it seems he has a job for life no matter what happens in any season so whilst we battle to have a branch removed, the press is now implying the tree itself might go. Whatever it takes I say.

  29. Nasri's Mouth

    @Jeff

    I don’t think it’s quite like that. Doubt very much Kroenke would be fooled by that.

    Rather I think this is just a planted story (and not a real bid) to judge opinion, both public and private. I doubt there’s an actual Arab consortium at all

    If there’s any kind of positive reaction, it might influence an actual bid by Usmanov.

    I’m putting the mights and maybes in there because it’s only one option, and none of us know the facts. For all I know it might just be a load of made up bollocks by a shit stirring Spurs supporting journo

  30. Jeff

    NM,

    That is of course possible. But is there not a better way to gauge opinion of the fans? Surely he knows that the unrest is growing and has probably reached the point now where as many as half the fans want change. If it is to see what Kroenke says, he must already know the answer to that as well. There is no way in hell SS will sell whatever the bid. He might be inclined to sell in a few years when we really start dropping in status and even the semi-stars we have now, leave us. But at the moment, I can’t see it although I would welcome it with open arms.

  31. Moray

    Jeff, it is all a bit over the top, but this is consistent with the game that has been played over the last 15 years of so in (and around) the Arsenal Boardroom. “No sale” agreements, backstairs deals, personal vendettas, marginalising games, comments about “not wanting foreigners”…Basically too, they are all getting richer with the current state of affairs and nobody wants to rock the boat, even if it means winning cups again. And then don’t forget that Usmanov is an Uzbek…a part of the world that thrives on this kind of cloak and dagger activities…

  32. Nasri's Mouth

    @Jeff

    Might be an attempt to flush out the owner’s view rather than the fans.

    I don’t think we’ve reached the point yet where Kroenke is going to be affected by fans discontent, other than as seen as decrease in revenue 9which is all he really cares about). For him to be to pushed into selling by unhappy fans would require much more bad publicity, including more in USA.
    But if he’s seen to turn down the offer, an offer to invest in the club, which is something he’ll never do, it’ll help to put more pressure on him. It all adds on to the increase in bad feelings towards him and to make him consider a real offer if it came.
    So I think this is just game playing by someone, and Usmanov would be at the top of the list

  33. Jeff

    Moray,

    I’ve no doubt that a game is being played (what with Usmanov’s open letter and outspoken views about the club direction) but I can’t see what Usmanov will gain out of it. If he is trying to get more fans on side to put pressure on Kroenke, that won’t work because he’s not even in the country and couldn’t care less what people say or do. But I suppose it’s better than doing nothing. If anything, it shows that Usmanov is prepared to go as high as 20k per share which is remarkable really. But I don’t know, I am very much still in the sceptics corner on this.

    NM,

    I understand the logic of where you’re heading with the pressure thing but the real question is whether or not Kroenke is even bothered. I don’t think he is. Not yet anyway. We could be mid-table and he wouldn’t care. The only thing that could ride to the rescue is a downturn in his other financial ventures which is unlikely in the short term. Call me a cynic but all avenues seem to lead to the same thing – no change, decline, lose games, win nothing, Wenger stays, players leave, dross remain and the wage bill goes up. Horrible and depressing I know.

  34. Nasri's Mouth

    @Jeff

    I think we both agree that Kroenke isn’t bothered enough by fans discontent to sell. That’s still some way off

    But this ‘offer’ could well just be part of a bigger picture, and as I say main reason could be as a way of sounding out whether there is actual interest in selling for profit, rather than just to avoid all those nasty little English people complaining.

    It’s just a theory, but I think it’s much more likely than there actually being an un-named consortium.

  35. Jeff

    NM,

    The bottom line is any kind of takeover that promises to invest in the club is welcome. We’ve landed the worst possible owner you could have wished for. One that doesn’t invest, doesn’t care and knows nothing about football. So if it is true and brings even a day closer the end of AW’s tenure at the club, I’m all for it.

  36. Incesc

    Can’t believe this shit

    The story was planted by dick law and Ivan to sell season tickets seeing as the ‘we have a war chest, falcao, jotevic, blah lies blah’ stuff has been rumbled

  37. Ric

    ‘We will not bid for Arsenal if they go into decline. Kroenke and Usmanov will not get this kind of valuation if Arsenal do not succeed and will not get this kind of valuation ever again.
    ‘The amount of capital required to pump into Arsenal to make it competitive within England, Europe and the world means that the valuation cannot go any higher.’
    It is unlikely Usmanov will want to sell his shareholding, given his ‘dream’ of taking control of Arsenal himself, but the Middle East consortium believes it will be able to work with the billionaire, who does not currently have a seat on the board.
    Any takeover would inevitably raise questions over the future of manager Arsene Wenger but the Frenchman is understood to be highly-regarded by the consortium.

    BS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    THEY WOULD WORK WITH BOTH USMANOV & WENGER, AND THEY*D PREFER TO BUY EXSPENSIVE?!!!
    SHAMELESS PROPAGANDA!!!
    The yids have a word for’em; SCHMUCKH!!!!

  38. Toli83

    Nasri’s mouth,

    Agreed. This could prompt things to move on a wider scale. If there is any truth in the story and the figures mentioned are correct hopefully it will make him think.

  39. Nasri's Mouth

    @Toli83

    20k is probably the kind of figure that Kroenke would sell for, so that makes sense, though if it’s a made up story, and journos being the lazy feckers that they are, they’d have just picked a round number like 20 anyway.

    @Jeff

    No new owner is going to be able to invest much in a club these days, FFP will see to that. However, having owners who are prepared to actually run the club as a business not as an investment would be a big improvement.

    I’m still sad that’s a choice between Kroenke and Usmanov though, would prefer options other than single owners

  40. lordsnotty

    If it’s in the Sunday Torygraph it must be bollocks. A once good newspaper. Now just dumbed-down garbage.

  41. kwik fit

    Sorry to dash hopes guys but Arsenal have released a statement confirming that an offer has NOT been received and that Stan has no intention of selling.
    I bet they enjoyed sticking the boot in to us the fans .

  42. kwik fit

    NM

    It is breaking news on Sky Sports news at about 10.45 am
    Didn’t hear the original piece but its still on the ticker bar.

    Kroenke just loves dampening fans expectations. A complete toss-pot.

  43. wanger-wenker

    rumours of a takeover would be expected in any case as this seasons performance provokes all manner of suggestions. Something at arsenal needs to change. The temptation of big money abramavitch style investers is really hard to resist. The cost is arsenals image and reputation, but surely weve got a pitiful one now that wenger has ripped out our spirit and replaced it with a tepid, geeky money-conscious tippy-tappy style.
    We wont get fourth spot (fortunately)which assists the unrest at wenger.4th spot only keeps wenger proclaiming his achievement of regular champs league football. That “achievement” seems to be enough to quell any revolution brewing in the background. Whatever money comes our way in the future, the fact remains that untill wenger goes we would still have an idiot in charge spending 10million on useless french players (as that is his style) and it would never change. Basically no changes of any consequence will take effect untill this arrogant pile of incompetent shint has gone from the club.

  44. TitsMcgee

    Kronke would be a fool to turn this down if true. An absolute fool. That is almost 1 billion US dollars he would gain out of the deal.

  45. TitsMcgee

    Hopefully it’s true but Kronke wouldn’t exactly come out and say “I will sell if there was an offer made”…

  46. bazza

    If the opposition play a high defensive line you use your quick players to get behind them – can someone please tell Theo

  47. Gregg

    Another inept masterclass in how not to defend. Another example of how nothing tactically is ever done or worked on in training. The plan not to allow Bale and play a high line was our our way of reducing the space for Bale but sometimes defenders just have to defend. Embarrasing attempts to play an Offside trap.

  48. Rhj

    Wenger, the man without a plan. A pal of mine who is not really interested in football sent me a txt yesterday saying I bet Wenger’s glad he didn’t have a plan for Bale. I remember the morning I left the house to go to Wembley to watch us lose the Carling Cup to Birmingham. Some league 1 nobody gave their opinion on the day’s coming event. Should be a formality for the Arsenal but they need to watch the big man from set pieces. Birmingham do a lot of corners where it’s knocked on and the big man heads it in. This league 1 nobody could not have called it better. Well played Wenger, you total kunt.

    Wenger out.