Arsenal dealing with pressure of expectation | Midfield monster Ramsey

by & filed under Match report.

ƒbri

Heading into October, things have really started to get a touch on the tasty side. Pre-game, Spurs and Chelsea played out a 1-1 draw at the Lane. I have to say, I wasn’t really impressed by either side. Spurs lacked pace to their game, Soldado who? Chelsea seemed to lack in lots of areas. How Mourinho can’t get that squad ticking over is a mystery. He even had to resort to bringing Mata back into the frame…

The Premiership took on two more violent twists that afternoon… Aston Villa took City down by 3 goals to 2. Then, to cap off a marvellous pre-1700 afternoon, West Brom took down United. Not just that, the Reds had a goal disallowed at Old Trafford at the death. Can you imagine that happening during the Fergie era?

So, we always arrive at a point like this in a season. It’s usually when we know we’re not ready to make a go of the league. Could this Arsenal side take down a good Swansea side away from home… with all the pressure on us?

Well, the answer was yes. It wasn’t easy. Swansea made things difficult for us, especially in the first half, but our class told when we came out in the second half and took a more direct approach to seal the win.

The first half was controlled in the main by Swansea who dominated possession like they normally do. Control the ball deep and try and pick out one of the pacey wide players. You wonder what sort of a day it’s going to be when Jonjo Shelvey controls the game. To be fair to him, he was excellent in patches against Liverpool. He doesn’t hide.

Despite their possession, we opened up with the first chance. Gibbs took a solo effort on out wide, breezing past his full back, flashing a dangerous ball across the 6  yard box… Giroud couldn’t connect. Our striker was fed in shortly after when Ozil turned superbly in the middle of the park, fed him in, but the cut back from the striker was a poor option and the play broke down.

Arsenal really weren’t at the races, especially in the final third. I felt Ozil went missing for large parts and Giroud wasn’t having a good day. He’s far more suited to playing against big beast defenders. When he’s played against players who play the game like Arsenal, he struggles a bit. He was played in after Gnabry cut inside and drove through the middle, he took a touch and dragged his chance harshly wide. A really bad miss. He should have hit the target at the very least.

There was a final bit of panic before half time played out… Chesney was tackled from a back pass by Michu, the Spaniard chased down the loose ball, our keeper watched it go out of play, Michu brought it in, our keeper gave up praying for the lino to flag, and the ball was flashed past our goal. The lino eventually raised the flag… the keeper was right… but jeez, there was some serious borderline arrogance. You always play to the whistle. Simple as that. Outside that, he was having a good game… it’s the moments of youthful madness that make you ponder his suitability.

The second half set off better for Chezzer… he raced off the line nice and early to see off a possible one on one. That early intervention was important. Our first goal came from some lovely Ramsey, Giroud (accidental) and Jack interplay… the Welshman played a reverse pass into the path of Gnabry, the young German powered a low drive into the bottom corner to open his account. A superbly taken goal and the icing on the cake of a really impressive 3rd game for the club.

The floodgates seemed to open after that. The next major chance fell to Ozil who found himself in acres of space with lashings of time… he elected to strike his shot at the near post and forced a good save. He really should have buried it. Still, we know the major weakness in his game is the goals. They’ll come though, for the time being, he’ll have to learn from Aaron Ramsey..

Oh, did I just spoil the next goal?

Jack Wilshere, who came to life in the second half, chased down a loose Aaron Ramsey blind flick, he slid, won it, released Giroud who back flicked it back to Jack… he powered on with the ball, passed to Giroud who laid of Ramsey in an area full of Swansea shirts, the Welshman looked up and smashed it home into the top corner. A splendid goal. 9 in 8? Something ridiculous.

*Also worth noting the second goal started when our keeper pulled a back pass back from behind the line… the ref missed it.

We still managed to make things difficult for ourselves. Poor Sagna tracking allowed their left back Davies to make his way into the area to connect with a Bony pass that he kneed past our keeper. A little disappointing to concede, but there you go.

We saw the game out. We didn’t have the strength from the bench to take off Giroud, which you’d have thought was a must. I don’t know the state of Nik B and his fitness, but our French talisman needs to be wrapped in all the cotton wool, bubble wrap and polystyrene protection we can find.

Final whistle blew, that was us done, top of the league by 2 clear points. 8 clear of United an 5 clear of City. Quite amazing. I know it’s only early days, but if you can’t get excited right at the moment… then give it all up. I’m going to be parading round the office on Monday, shirt off, covered in Arsenal face paint making as much noise as I can with a foghorn and one of those sixties rattle things.

… smugness just got serious. You know why? Because football is a cruel temptress and you just don’t know how long it’ll be before she drops you over her knee and spanks you back to reality in a way that is none too pleasurable.

We’re top of the league with a serious lack of first team players. Not many clubs could position themselves where we are missing Cazorla, Theo, Chamberlain, Podolski, Diaby (I joke) and Rosicky. We’re having a good run and sure, we were better off points and goals wise against the same sides last year, but we’re arguably weaker than we were squad wise. So it’s all evened itself out.

Our league destiny this year is decided by three things. We need a massive amount of help on the injury front. We’ve been dished out some bad luck so far, hopefully it won’t get much worse, but chances are, with our squad, it will do. Secondly, how we perform against top 6 sides is the major difference. Firstly, because over the last 5 years, we’ve been atrocious. We’ll never have a better season to put paid to that. City, Chelsea, United, Spurs and Liverpool are all in transition. The third key point, and this is something that has always let Arsene teams down… how we bounce back from disappointment. We’ll lose soon and it might come out of the blue. How we deal with that mentally is a massive challenge.

If we make progress on all three of those items, we should be well placed to have a good season.

Thoughts on the game?

Serge Gnabry looks a player. He’s only young, but mentally, he looks very strong. He’s German, of course he does right? He has a certain focus about him. A calm in his eyes that Theo Walcott and Aaron Ramsey didn’t have at the same age. He drove our attacking intent at times yesterday and he made a positive contribution with a very well taken goal. He’s a far better option than Gervinho already. That’s a seriously big compliment for a player so young.

Aaron Ramsey continued to be our most influential player on the pitch. He’s come on leaps and bounds this year. I remember writing a few years ago that I was told he covered the most ground in training, made the most tackles, had the most shots… so the raw ingredients have always been there, but mentally, he wasn’t quite mature enough in games. 2013 has seen a resurgence. Telling that he put his game down to being played in the right position when asked on Sky. He said that he’s worked hard and he struggled at times last season because he was put all over the place. Note that he didn’t blame his injury. This is a case of someone working hard and maturing. His injury had an impact on his progress, but the shackles being lifted on his game are down to him working on his game. A lot of credit needs to be give to him in this turnaround.

I think Flamini needs to be given a shout out for allowing Ramsey the freedom to control things. His pace and tenacity take some of the defensive burden off him. If you watch, when other teams are on the counter attack, Flamini almost drops into a centre back position. He has the pace to do that. Arteta isn’t naturally that guy and I think his mobility issues sometimes exposed us last season.

Our keeper has to be given a nod for another assured performance. He’s had a rocket put up his backside when Arsenal seriously considered replacing him. Viviano doing him the world of good. Bar the madness with the back pass, he had an assured game. He pulled of a very good saves late on. What he’s doing well this season is the basics. He’s calm from crosses and his kicking is getting much better. Bravo.

Onwards and upwards people, Napoli on Tuesday.

276 Responses to “Arsenal dealing with pressure of expectation | Midfield monster Ramsey”

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  1. DUIFG

    Tim you propose dropping ozil for arteta? Agree with the rest of your comment hat artet is being made out I be a lumbouring old man, guy is still a VERY handy player. Will be needed, especially in champs league.

  2. DUIFG

    We’ve seen quite a bit of podolski cf and wide. Wide he is pretty anonymous but can score. We play better with caz wide as end of last year showed.

    Pod is awful through the middle, along with the zero goals he has scored there his link ups are poor and does not offer the movement giroud does.

    He is a good experienced bench option for us now. No bad thing, it just is what it is.

  3. Radio Raheem

    “Let’s see,” said Wenger. “I think if we are in April this time competing for the championship we will be in a much stronger position than the years before.
    “This is the first year that we have not only not lost a big player but bought a big player so that’s what is new for us.
    “Until 2005 we were a team who could compete every year to win the championship. After we moved into the new stadium, it’s not a coincidence that suddenly we were bit [lacking]. Even if in some seasons we were close to winning the championship, we couldn’t win it.
    “Maybe we missed that little bit of experience and quality that makes the difference in April.”
    Wenger is confident that Arsenal can compete with the Premier League’s traditional powers – but he says there is now a bigger challenge on the continent.
    “We are resource-wise more competitive, that’s for sure,” said Wenger. “But internationally, it’s become harder because you have more clubs who can buy the big players.
    “We are more competitive with the English clubs and with the foreign clubs but the competition overall in Europe has become bigger because more clubs have the financial resources to buy the big players.”

  4. Southernpeople

    dialsquare

    “Whatever happened to the free flowing football Wenger is supposedly known for”

    “supposedly known for”? As if you’re doubting that??

    We still not as bad as you make it out, and our free flowing football is back when we got our great ball playing players like Arteta, Cazorla, Podolski and Champo, and hopefully Diaby.

  5. Southernpeople

    Duifg

    had podolsky had the clear cut chances that Walcott and Giroud wasted he could have topped the scoring chart. There’s no doubt that he’s the most lethal clinical forward we have.

    There’s a of course the little matter of bad positioning and a bit of laziness that prevented him from getting into scoring position. but that can be corrected and it’d come with more games as central striker.

    If he’s back by mid november we’d be bit more relaxed and confident.

  6. DUIFG

    You don’t pick up an awareness of movement at 28. If we are left with pod as a striking option after jan then that woul be poor. Not sure why people put forward pod as a cf, if you actually watched the games he has played there ou would see how massively ineffective he has been there. Would rather ox as cf tbh if it came to putting pod up there.

  7. Southernpeople

    dialsquare

    “Southernpeople – Name me the last game Arsenal played free flowing football.”

    did you read what I said?? did I say Arsenal are playing free flowing football?

    I said that our football is not as bad as you said.

    I also ‘questioned’ your statement about wenger’s “supposedly” free flowing football. I guess you by using “supposedly known for” you meant to object to the fact that Wenger teams played ‘free flowing’ football in the past. you were talking about the past teams not the current team, so I questioned that.

  8. Southernpeople

    duifg

    I am not suggesting here that I prefer Podol to lead the line or even Giroud for the reminder of the season, I am just saying we’ve enough better solution when he’s back. but still think we need a proper world class centreforward in our team and we need to buy this January to improve our chances.

    that’s the opinion of most our fans, it’s nothing new. and it doesn’t mean Giroud is rubbish, podolsky is not enough, it simply means we need different sort of player, a better striker.

  9. themightykarim

    some say Dialsquare is a nervous wreck
    Some say he s a sad loser
    I think he s something different he s one of the 2 angels supposedly over your shoulder, constantly reminding you what you ve done wrong while someone else say all is rosy
    he s a bit like like an antivirus, his real name is Avast

  10. Johnty79

    No won on here is brave enough to say we will finish above man utd…..because you know soon as giroud gets injured our season is finished…what a waste we were a loic remy signing from winning the league this year.

    Didn’t see the game but did bony dominate koiseny as predicted? I know he started on the bench which was a massive mistake from Swansea.

    If Walcott and poldolski are back pronto we have a slight chance of winning the league slight chance.

  11. Sam

    We are top of the league and we still not good enough.
    Are you the same guys that called Gnabry crap just 3 days ago. Why do you really bother?
    Liverpool now feel they have a chance what make you think they will sell you their striker?

  12. Sam

    We care about diaby because he’s an arsenal player. Even better now we don’t have to rush him back.
    What’s your point?
    He can just warm up on the sideline n sneak in for few minutes on the pitch. 10 games will qualify him for medal.

    #LEGEND

  13. Rohan

    Even Giroud doesn’t get on the score sheet, he’s always good value for a few classy flicks and touches. His link up play is very very good.

  14. stevegooner

    Why would anyone care if Diaby comes back?
    Even when fully fit he’s a truly terrible player
    A complete mong

    AA23
    you need to fuck off on 2 counts
    There aint a lot wrong with Diabys skills. The leg break at Sunderland hasn’t helped. I agree Arsenal need to draw a line under his tenure.
    On the second count, you are a comlete cunt. MY neice has Downs Syndrome, up till recently described as Mongols, of which mong is a derivitive

    PEDRO
    Is there any need for people like this on Le Gove?

  15. Jamal

    I hope Santi’s back for the West Brom game.

    The bench is pretty shit at the moment but with the likes of Santi, Podolski and Rosicky coming back it will be great.

    Viviano, Vermaelen, Arteta, Pod, Rosicky, Santi, Monreal, Jenks, Bendtner to choose from in a few weeks.

  16. themightykarim

    Mourinho apparently declared he would play a team of U 20 against us in the next round of the Coca Cola Cup…

    Problem solved ?

  17. I Gunner Believe it

    Jamal

    Thats a strong bench!

    though I think jack will be replaced by santi once Santi is fully match fit.

    So we will have 3 very good mids on the bench jack ros art

    2 very good wingers pod ox

    1 promising winger Gnarby

    3 very decent back four players mon jenk verm

    and an ok keeper, viv

  18. I Gunner Believe it

    themightykarim

    I was speaking to a french bloke

    Told me how he is absolutely adored by women in France in fact he has groupies who he is known to have orgies with… now I can imagine these women are some of the most sexy beautiful women with insanely great figures.

    No wonder the bloke is a narcissist

  19. Sam

    Diaby deserves a winner medal, much better than all the mercs that left us

    I heard things are not going well for van traitor at old toilet.

    The Scottish dynasty is declining

  20. MarsBar

    Some people stil moan and still find problems.

    We are top. Some things have changed on the way we play at home and away from home to get the results.

    Everyone used to moans for years we couldn’t see out wins, now it’s something we can seem to do. Defensively a few adjustments and clean sheets will follow.

    Always seem to have a few gears in our play, even with our injuries.

    And love Wenger or not. Tactic wise be it defensive substitution or or play seems to have more of a game plan this season than most against teams and years gone by.

    So fuck lets not stop picking holes in areas it’s not needed. Becoming a miserable bunch of mugs on here otherwise.

    I’d take this for few more months. Not even playing that well and winning!

  21. themightykarim

    kwik

    I can feel your love for the man …

    Is it me or Jose already sounds like a bitter has been ?

    IGBI

    wouldn t surprise me the guy s a fucking Greek statue

    Hope his genitals aren t similar though : )

  22. Sam

    We can still forgive van passed-it and offer him an escape route. I am sure bushra and the kids would love life in London. It’s the greedy daddy that moved them up there so welcome back
    But we will give the traitor 2 conditions:
    Giroud is desperate for a biatch, bendtner is kinda pant. He’s perfect for the bench role.
    2. He has to accept 70k pay, 10k less than wilshere. Here we don’t buy trophy
    we work hard for it.

  23. I Gunner Believe it

    Ramsey was stripped of the captaincy because he spoke out against the change of management after gary speed killed him self.

    Ramsey was a legend stating the case it didn’t make sense to get rid of all of Gary Speeds staff.

    Loyal humble brilliant guy… He deserves all that wet welsh pussy tbh!

  24. I Gunner Believe it

    Purple patches rarely last a whole season if Ramsey continues this form for the whole season his world fucking class.

    Not just the goals the constant brilliant tackles breaking up play starting counter attacks then having the vision tenacity and drive/stamina to get up the pitch and either finish them off or assist the finisher.

    His not just been banging in the goals his been creating them and his passing is very good all these factors together if this is not a purple patch then his seriously up there.

  25. DUIFG

    Not arguing just recognising that robben was class. Was looking at vids yest and a couple of gerv’ a filthy touches made it into the compilation. We gave him a very fair crack of the whip and he fucked it. Would have to do loads in Italy to convince me that he’s a player

  26. Same Story

    Arsenal and Dortmund top of their respective leagues, Napoli 2nd and 2 pts off, Marseille 3rd 1pt off.

    If we beat Napoli Tuesday we’ll be about 50% through to the next round.

  27. DUIFG

    Ffs Sam, hit google check his stats over 2 seasons. Filthy. On top if that an think of a single time he influenced a game or came in our top 3 best players that day. Don’t dislike the guy but his composure touch and finishing was not arsenal quality.

  28. MadeToLoveMagic

    I know it’s harsh on forehead, but when he missed through on goal against Milan to make it 4 4 in the champs league was the moment I lost faith in him, or stopped caring about him anyway,

    He bitched and moaned that wenger didn’t show enough faith in him, yet wenger publically said he was the best player in Africa, lol,

    He had enough of a shot with us, always looked good dribbling, but Jesus he couldn’t finish finish for sheeeeet

  29. MadeToLoveMagic

    Infact gervhead always looked GREAT dribbling , you are right if he could have sorted his composure he could have been incredible,

    Could still come good though, I hope he does, he’s got one of those faces that makes u feel sorry for him, and he obviously loved arsenal

  30. Sam

    Gervinho left arsenal please wish him well.

    What’s all this hate for?
    When things don’t work out, thank a player for his contributions and hope he does better wherever he goes
    Are you spurs in disguise?

  31. dialsquare

    That was Wenger’s job to get the best out of Gervinho, instead of which he blamed his lack of confidence, when in truth it was Wenger’s inept coachng that was to blame.

  32. Sam

    Well dialsquare

    You better know how to Swim
    With that big mouth of yours I will let you drawn
    Coz you will never shutup even in the middle of the sea
    You will bore me to death

  33. Thomas

    lol “traitors”. Not their fault that Wenger and the club didn’t show any ambitions. All of them have won trophies since.

  34. Same Story

    Arsenal’s squad does have talent in abundance, in the more junior ranks as well as the senior. ‘Some of the younger boys are very good players,’ says Fabregas.
    ‘Ramsey, Wilshere, Fran Merida. They are at the level of everyone. Perhaps even better than me. They are top class. In training, phew, they are so good.
    ‘Aaron has really developed. Physically he is bigger and more powerful, as you could see when we played Liverpool in the Carling Cup. If I go to sleep I will wake up and find him in my place. No, it is true. Wilshere will be a top player, too, and when he gets a bit older they will move him into the middle. They just need a run of games to gain confidence and they will be a big part of Arsenal’s future. A future I hope to be part of.’

  35. Sam

    Thomas,

    Everytime a twat leaves he takes away our chance to win something.
    If we had van persie, nasri and Cesc in the same thing we would have won the league last season. Man u won it not because they were good, they won because no one fought for it.

  36. Cesc Appeal

    Billiken

    Yeah I saw that, £12 Million cut price due to another fall out.

    He’s a bomb waiting to go off.

    But man oh man is he a player, fast, strong, good finisher, perfect CF.

    Just that attitude, and the fact he’s a ticking timebomb.

  37. Sam

    It’s simple, they are just lazy twats who didn’t want to stay n fight for medal. They prefer to go sit on their backsides at nou camp or etihad n have medals handed to them
    Ramsey, flamini, giroud, Walcott and all are our gladiators and will fight to the end

  38. Sam

    Sagna gibbo bosscielny and Bfg

    All our gladiators

    Even sczeszny will fight to the end.
    Forget that twat, let him go hide behind messi and neymar and win medals.
    We will win ours with bloods n sweats

  39. Cesc Appeal

    Sam

    So literally in your eyes anyone who leaves any club is a traitor?

    So Ozil is like a triple traitor.

    The only person on our team who isn’t is Jack Wilshere?

  40. sam

    Ozil was sold, he didn’t wanna leave

    Cesc kissed our badge while plotting to stab us in the back
    Van Judas has no honour, after 8 years of injuries he stabbed us
    Koscielny is French Fa’s blessing now they benefited as we always produce French international.
    Nasri looks like a girl anyway we don’t need him
    Song is just a twat

  41. sam

    Giroud as our super Gladiator
    when he joined us everyone in france was happy.
    Nicollin gave his blessing, well he was only unhappy with wenger about the fee.
    you play for arsenal you are guaranteed a place in the national team.
    French players joining arsenal are not traitors.

  42. ikon

    For me Gnabry is already a bigger player than Jack…. always blown away by his match temperament and always makes a difference in important situations.

    Brilliant player we have on our hands.

    Jack Wilshere needs to put his head down and contribute.

  43. ikon

    And Ramsey celebrations has been like that at least twice this season… so nothing much to do with Swansea..

    Balotelli would be a great talent to have… but he is bonkers… probably worth a shot for half a season.

    Would love to get Reus if we can.

  44. Bade

    Good post Pedro

    I think you need to add fourth element there

    We need to bring on a top CF in January, then we can be a real force in the title race

    Look how Liverpool suddenly looked more dangerous with Suarez

    A top CF can win you games out of nothing

  45. Leedsgunner

    Bade @ 0731

    A top CF can win you games that’s true but a top GK can also keep you in games that you deserve to lose. Mignolet is proving himself to be class act… and bought for £9m as well what a steal! Chesney will be a top GK one day that’s true I’m just not convinced he’s there yet… let’s hope he doesn’t start believing his own hype and become complacent.

  46. Rohan

    Balotelli managed right (don’t know if it’s possible) if a potential Balon D’Or player. Has absolutely everything in the locker. Just a complete nutter.

  47. Norfolk

    samSeptember 30, 2013 00:37:24
    Ozil was sold, he didn’t wanna leaveCesc kissed our badge while plotting to stab us in the back
    Van Judas has no honour, after 8 years of injuries he stabbed us
    Koscielny is French Fa’s blessing now they benefited as we always produce French international.
    Nasri looks like a girl anyway we don’t need him
    Song is just a twat

    I was heartened to see Bale kissing his new clubs badge and making heart signs at the new crowd. Did take him long did it.
    Spurts fans very quiet on the subject round here.