Arsenal spank suicidal Wigan and relegate them | Chance of 3rd place playoff very real

by & filed under Match report.

The game wasn’t about points. It was about goal difference. Too many Arsenal fans wrapped their day around Mike Dean and a poor Wigan’s resilience. Well… more fool those people.

Just kidding. What a game. It was met by joy, followed by Mike Dean despair, followed by shrieks of despondency, followed by a hattrick of further pleasure. The game had it all for me, Wigan, of 19 game loss notoriety, was probably my favourite game of the season. It was one of the few where fans united. It was the first time all year I turned round and questioned the anti fan behind us some stick for singing ‘you’ve won more cups than us’ as we were winning. The irony? He said if we lost we could ‘kick out the nonces and move back to Highbury’… Singing anti-Arsenal songs during a game?

Anyway. The game was about the goal difference. Theo carved out our first chance when he crossed for Cazorla to head just wide. He was on fire from the start and he was one of the few who stood up and showed some mettle from the get go.

Our opening came from a shoddy piece of defensive work from Wigan. Cazorla placed a corner into the six yard box, everyone missed leaving Lukas a simple 5 yard header. Magic. A goal up nice and early.

We continued to press like our survival depended on it. We carved out plenty of possession and the boys we’re firing on all cylinders. Then things started to calm. It started to feel like we were going to settle for a 1-0. Wigan were clearly tired and I said to the guys around me, ‘a set price is the only way we’ll concede’… I headed to the bar to get my first round of the season, repeated myself to the guy standing next to me… bang. Maloney scored from an unjust freekick moments after Dean failed to award Santi one for a similar tustle. The freekick was pretty good. The wall failed and the keeper didn’t get across fast enough. He rarely does.

The boys rolled in at half time and we were all disgusted. The team was average, they’d taken their foot of the gas and they deserved the scoreline. How was this happening? I wasn’t having it though. This was a poor Wigan team playing a suicidal highline. There was no way they could hang on… I hoped. I even accidentally made a £1000 bet it wouldn’t be 4-1 (I thought I’d take a £1000 if it was 4-1).

2nd half started and we were on the back foot straight away. Koscielny was immense, but it was our keeper who made a telling save from Kone which was huge in terms of the overall result. The save was followed by an underrated turning point when Gibbs slipped in and poked the ball away from the same man 5 minutes later.

Would Arsenal collapse? Would we show that our mental spirit was below par when it mattered… again?

Well, no as it happened, we found our stride. Ramsey stopped falling over and making shoddy passes, Cazorla started to boss things like the world class wizard we know he is. He broke down the wing, slipped a ball into the dangerzone and watched Theo nip in front of two defenders and a keeper to put us ahead. The four guys I sit with went ballistic, so much man love you’d need a subscription to share it… Noting the guy behind us just clapped.

A one goal lead is never enough for Arsenal. Not for security of victory nor for taking third on goal difference. We needed more.

Our third came when Santi nodded a ball into the path of Lukas, he broke free of the offside trap and jinked the ball past the keeper.

The crowd were on fire at this point, to be fair, even when the chips were level, everyone was behind the boys. The rain was hammering down but the only dampened spirits were the Wigan fans who’d obviously missed their train on Saturday. Finally, we were going to see the back of Wigan. The final nail for the coffin was being angled under a giant hammer…  it came from captain ‘where are my studs’ Ramsey. He powered into the box (set free by Santi), headed towards goal at an angle, he gave the a cheeky look across box before switching it past the shocked Joel. What a goal! Who dies today? Who cares, as long as they die knowing it was for a good cause!

It was over for Wigan. Good riddance. Any team that concedes 71 goals needs a good season away from the league to have a think about that.

They still tried to batter their way to a goal, but it was over. Koscielny and Mertesacker had the back four on lockdown and held on.

For the first time in years, it was worth staying behind to salute the players efforts. 8 wins and 2 draws is a very good return over ten games and it’s all we could ask for given the obvious limitations of the set up and the lack of depth we have. The job is far from done and there are many twists yet to happen, but it’s all down to desire now. If we take the confidence from that game into the weekend, we’ll be more than a match for Newcastle.

After that, we can start thinking about to summer and the possibilities it could hold.

The season is nearly over… and to be honest, I can’t fu*king wait.

P.S. There’s a big possibility we could end playing Chelsea in a 3rd place play off… I think if we win 2-1 and Chelsea draw 0-0… it could be on. Wouldn’t that be amusing!

541 Responses to “Arsenal spank suicidal Wigan and relegate them | Chance of 3rd place playoff very real”

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  1. Arsene's Nurse

    If ze Europa League eez beeeg enough for Chelsea, it eez beeeg enough for Arsenal – Arsene Wenger, May 19th 2013.

  2. Dan Ahern

    “Premier League rules state: “If at the end of the season… the question of qualification for other competitions cannot be determined because two or more clubs are equal on points, goal difference and goals scored, the clubs concerned shall play off one or more deciding league matches on neutral grounds, the format, timing and venue of which shall be determined by the board.””

  3. Arsene's Nurse

    Kushagra May 15, 2013 21:29:40

    Nurse jinxed it, typical ..

  4. kwik fit

    Anyway in other news;

    Arsenal agree transfer of Howard Webb from Man U with immediate effect and confirm he will officiate at Newcastle on Sunday.

    Kudos to Wenger for being proactive for a change!

  5. Kiyoshi Ito


    When was the last time Chelsea failed to win any trophy?


    When was the last time,AFC won any trophy?
    Answer 2005…!!

  6. reggie 57

    Your got some front keyser for some one who’s on here nigh on 24 hours a day found a job yet?

  7. Cesc Appeal

    What about a potential team of:

    Sagna Boateng Kozz Gibbs
    Gustavo/Gonalons Wilshere
    Walcott Jovetic Cazorla


  8. Kiyoshi Ito

    reggie 57May 15, 2013 21:56:53
    Your got some front keyser for some one who’s on here nigh on 24 hours a day found a job yet?

    LOL…So true..He’s got more front than Katie Price’s silicone implants..

    A job is a dirty word,to Keyser,he’s goes into complete meltdown when you ask them that question!

    Ask him that question& watch him squirm,his way out of it..!!

  9. goonerbone

    They will be fat and happy against Everton and we will take third! I would be happy if I really believed it…

  10. Kiyoshi Ito

    reggie 57May 15, 2013 22:10:11

    Yep,he wants a job,rimming Arsene’s posterior 24/7 & getting rogered in Arsene’s office,free of charge..!

  11. Wengers Plastic Bottle

    Chelsea Managers come and go but they still are a success

    Arsenal Manager stays and wins the 4th place trophy every year

  12. Dan Ahern

    Coquelin to Schalke is a nice move, I wish him well if he goes. Good utility player, could become a good defensive mid given the opportunity. Definitely expect us to move for a DM or very strong/physical box-to-boxer. Arteta/Diaby/Ramsey is not going to cut it going forward.

  13. Voetstoots

    Seems like some people on this site need reminding that Chelsea only got into this Europa League by failing to qualify from their group in the Champions League… Yip, another trophy for them – but based on the simple point I mention here, still a better season for Arsenal.


  14. Voetstoots

    Gunner786, I can only presume that you’re referring to your club Tottenham?

    Nope, you’ve never been London’s finest.

  15. Kiyoshi Ito


    What point are your making..?

    Last time,Chelsea failed to win a trophy of any sort,was back in 2003/4..

    From 2004/5 every year,till date they have won at least a trophy every year..

    So what,if they dropped into the Europa Cup,from the CL?
    It’s one more to the collection for them..& zilch trophies for us,almost approaching a decade..

    How do you explain,last year’s CL Cup?

    Or,how do you explain the last 7 years of 11 trophies, for CFC?

    A better season for us?

    By what yardstick do you measure that?

    Mr Wenger’s-4th is a trophy yardstick?

  16. Voetstoots

    Kiyoshi, just answer this question: would you prefer for Arsenal not to get through the group stage of the Champions League, yes or no?

    I thought my point was pretty obvious.

    Some people here will just never be satisfied. Oh sorry, I forgot… Except when Wenger’s eventually out… Yeah right.

  17. mahessar

    Looks like our Chamakh might be heading back to France and Sagna off to Anzhi.

    Total sum of 15m from the two would be nice and also free up two of our highest earners.


  18. sam

    This Gonalons guy is good but I am thinking buying another french player with no premiership experience could slow down our season. Good excuse for wenger when we start dropping points, that our new signings are not ready.

  19. sam

    Keep coquelin, a good utility player. get rid of rosicky and diaby and replace them with 2 new signings.

  20. mahessar


    I think Rosicky and Ramsey have been the reason behind our form January onwards. I wouldn’t sell them, enough of selling players from the starting Xi honestly.

  21. sam

    Yes Mahessar,

    they scored maybe 5 goals between them all seasons.
    If you want to win things you have to do better, upgrade.

  22. BB KING

    Chelsea is a team of champions. They always win trophies every year. They are creating a rich history, the FINEST team of London they are now. Haters gonna hate Chelsea, but the truth is they will always compete to win trophies – every year.

  23. goonerboy

    Peter Cech has a point-Chelsea have comprehensively beaten us home and away this season-who can honestly say that we deserve third place ahead of them?
    The replay is not going to happen because Chelsea will get third place anyway.

    I would not put any money on us to beat Newcastle up there. Newcastle are erratic but they have a stronger team than us when their midfield is fit and our French style will be very familiar to them. Without Arteta I can see them running right through the middle of us. We are still capable of getting a draw.

    Most likely we will finish 5th because I don’t see Spurs slipping up at home to Sunderland.

    As for Wilshere and Ramsey-they are promising thats all. Wilshere isn’t even fit.

    This whole 4th place business is about dividends for shareholders and profits for profits sake-personally I don’t support this club in order to make a few rich toffs and speculators richer.

    Have you never asked yourselves why it takes Arsenal twice as long to buy any player than any other club? Because we won’t pay the market price -ever-every deal is complicated by a plethora of add ons.

    The bottom line is that the list of crap players Wenger has bought in recent years is now a long one. He has not ever bought big, buys cheap at every opportunity and has never been prepared to use the money he does have to buy top quality- he sells stars and buys kids-and you think he will change that now?

    The real issue this summer is not who Wenger will buy-but who he will sell