Happy 20TH14 | Crazy rotation on the cards |Game of trust…

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Happy 20TH14 people!

See what I did there? I cleverly layered the our greatest strikers name and number into the number of the new year.

… why?

… because I’m giving you hope on a miserable, cold, New Year’s Day. But this isn’t false hope. I’m feeling that in the Chinese year of the ‘Thierry’, things could be special. We are top of the league. We have a the best ‘team’ in the league. I don’t think anyone is more consistent than us and I don’t think anyone plays with the same industrious nature… We grind out results, we blow people away with beautiful football, we can bully, we can defend… 2013 saw a new Arsenal. 2013 saw a new Arsene.

I think a massive hat tip has to go to the manager. He’s taken on new scouting technology, he’s handed the defence over to someone who knows it better, he’s bought experience over the last 2 years, he’s shifted out the ‘no hope brigade’, he’s starting to pay more attention to his analysts (he talks a lot more about schedules and rotations, without really doing it, but talk is a start) and he smashed his transfer record. He’s slowly but surely evolving into the modern way of the game. I can’t really ask for much more…

So let’s hope today, where he has to rotate, he is rewarded. I think it’ll be pretty wholesale. Someone said there’s no Monreal or Gibbs. Which could mean… errr… who is our child left back?

Ok, so it’ll likely mean Sagna at left Bac (clever pun), Jenks at right back, with Per and Kos in the middle.

Midfield I’m thinking Arteta, Rosicky, Cazorla and Jack.

Up top, Lukas, Bendtner and Theo.

That is a good side right? Missing loads of big hitters and it’s a good side more than capable of blowing a decent, if not rudderless, Cardiff City away.

Now, it has to be big performance from the crowd. No hangover atmosphere please. It also has to be a big performance from the fringe players. Last time we mass rotated was Hull and it was great.

For me, this performance is key to us winning the league. Why?

Because if the rotated squad plays a blinder, Wenger will trust them and rotate more freely. If they tank, he’ll get the fear, and he’ll be back to running players into they ground. So today, is a key day for the rest of the season. Hopefully the second string show the same drive as the first. Not that it’s a real second string, but you get what I mean!

Right, have a great day and an even better year!


719 Responses to “Happy 20TH14 | Crazy rotation on the cards |Game of trust…”

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  1. Preencemeka

    i think we’ll win today. Not gonna be a walk in the park though with the latest injuries. 3-0 to the good guys. COYG!!!!!

  2. bishop

    Happy new year good people…Big ups to Pedro for your time posting all year for us..on behalf of myself and fellow Nigerians, we say thank YOU.

  3. Simon

    Nice to see some praise for the manager. It was pretty freaky in the comments lately: we had this well performing team but apparently no thanks to the manager. Fans have dug themselves a very deep hole.

  4. Simon



    Actually we have a special dispensation. Other teams have a 12 man in the supporters but we moaned so much that the FA said we could have another player instead.

  5. Moray

    Reuters, Tuesday December 31 2013
    By Tony Jimenez
    LONDON, Dec 31 (Reuters) – Roman Abramovich’s Chelsea will comply with new European Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules despite returning to loss for the year ending June 2013.
    “Although the Europa League was won, a reduction in income from that success compared with winning the Champions League in 2012 contributed to a loss for the financial year of 49.4 million pounds ($81.64 million),” the club said in a statement on Tuesday.
    FFP regulations state a club can have a deficit of no more than 45 million euros (37 million pounds) a year but head of communications Steve Atkins told Reuters that because of complicated accounting rules, Chelsea’s actual loss was around 34 million pounds.
    “Group turnover of 255.8 million pounds for the 12-month period is a record figure for the club despite elimination from the Champions League at the group stage last season,” Chelsea said in their statement.
    “A 19 percent rise in commercial income from 67 million to 79.6 million pounds is a clear indication Chelsea is moving in the right direction in terms of business growth, as is a turnover figure that increased for a fourth consecutive year despite diminished European competition revenue.”
    The year ending June 2012 was the first time Chelsea had made a profit since Russian oligarch Abramovich bought the club in 2003.
    “The latest financial result combined with the previous year’s profit of 1.4 million pounds means for the first monitoring period for FFP regulations – which spans the 2011/12 and 2012/13 seasons – we will fall comfortably within the break-even criteria set by UEFA,” the club said.
    “We have the fifth highest revenue of all football clubs in the world according to the latest published Deloitte figures.”
    Chelsea are performing creditably on the pitch this season.
    With Jose Mourinho back holding the reins as coach for the second time, the team occupy third place in the Premier League and are through to the last 16 of the Champions League where they will meet former striker Didier Drogba’s Galatasaray.
    Chelsea have put pen to paper on major new partnerships with Audi, Delta and Azimut Hotels.
    A 10-year extension to a global agreement with Adidas was announced in June 2013, meaning the financial boost from the biggest deal the club has yet to sign will be recorded in the 2013/14 accounts.
    “From the very beginning of the current ownership of Chelsea…a long-term objective was financial sustainability and the subsequent implementation of Financial Fair Play by UEFA and by the Premier League has brought that to the top of the agenda for football clubs,” said chairman Bruce Buck.
    “By our own analysis we are progressing from a commercial viewpoint as well as continuing to add trophies to our collection which we never lose sight of as our most important goal.”
    Chelsea have altered their recruitment policy in recent years, investing in younger players like Belgian internationals Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and Brazil playmaker Oscar.
    “Our philosophy is we build upon success on the pitch,” said chief executive Ron Gourlay.
    “Although in these financial results we haven’t repeated the sizeable profits made the previous year from player transfers, we believe the age profile of the existing squad means we will benefit from that investment for many years to come.”
    ($1 = 0.6051 British pounds) (Additional reporting by Keith Weir, editing by Toby Davis)

  6. TOLI83

    Surely play Vermaelan left back?

    Start Gnarby if Walcott is out. More than capable replacement.

    Anyone else seen that Viviano is leaving his loan early to go back to Italy, did he actually play a game for us?

  7. Mo

    Happy new year to all you mad bastards. I think we’ll huff and puff and eventually blow their house down. Hopefully.

  8. chocc

    so what can i achieve in my life..:( someone even beat me to thanking pedro on behalf of nigerians .. @Bishop ..omo naija

  9. chocc

    according to pedro’s team.. Arsene could achieve another milestone, the first coach to have the twelfth man on the pitch… Oh shiit.. Fergie beat him to it

  10. Revving Kevin

    Happy new year Pedro and all the good guys.

    By the way it’s not Cardiff away or I will have Spunked my train fare, oh Pedro that team you picked has 12 players!!! Stay off that Peroni mate..!

    Nice post Simon, as usual.

    Time for fringe players to throw down a marker. Imagine if Bendtner smacks in a hattrick, that would be interesting. Nice wet pitch as it’s pissing down which will help.

    Come on boys let’s start 2014 the way we finished 2013.

  11. Ben

    Happy New Year Grovers, here’s to a new year of less moaning.
    3-0 to The Arsenal.Gnabry, Poldi and a rare Sagna screamer. #Aha.

  12. Charlie Boy

    Good New Year’s Day post Pedders (as usual).

    Totally agree with your summation – a chance to prove we can rotate with the talent we have at our disposal.

    Would really like to see Gnabry start instead of Theo for 60 mins, then swap once the lad’s had a good run out. Sadly, I don’t think Arsene will be so bold.

    Regarding Mr Wenger, I’m no AKB but I’m no hater either. It’s hard to see what other manager could have done with the same money and team!

    Yes, the haters will say he didn’t buy this or didn’t do that, but no ones knows what restrictions the board placed on him during the stadium pay-off period.

    It’s interesting to note however, that as soon as the stadium was paid off he spent a record Β£42m on Ozil and now has a proper amount available for reinforcing the team.

  13. Rhys Jaggar

    Thierry’s Year of the Snake runs out in about a month, mate.

    Come May, it’s the year of the Horse.

    Try the year of Tony Adams!! He was born in the Year of the Horse, 1966….

  14. Revving Kevin

    Charlie Boy
    Nicely put. Look at Chelsea, their model is about to change after the huge losses they posted and the comments about FFP affecting them. we are in a fantastic position now. I can’t wait for the payback we are going to start getting soon. This special club is about to become mega and we can all look forward to some great times in my opinion. I can’t help being a hopeless romantic!

  15. Sam

    Happy new year grovers!

    Can swansea do us a favour today?
    Ambush that man city caravan , we will return the favour n beat Cardiff

  16. Sam

    Happy new year!

    This time next year we will be title holders
    And wenger done a fergie on us n retired
    Had enough, just wanted his last trophy n fok off

  17. Harry Redknapp

    norfolk did you not see the goal? ball rolled out the area they all stood still none closed it down all turned their backs on the shot. super easy

  18. Norfolk

    Harry RedknappJanuary 1, 2014 13:14:35
    norfolk did you not see the goal? ball rolled out the area they all stood still none closed it down all turned their backs on the shot. super easy

    Yes I saw it, no argument, it was easy but I thought against the run of play.
    They have battered City for the last 10 I thought.

  19. Harry Redknapp

    i never really had an eye on the game i just saw the goal and was dissapointed, i disagreed with alan smith sayin it was a glorious strike.

  20. Simon

    It’s too much to ask isn’t it that City draw, we win and get a 3 point cushion? Yes it is!

  21. Guns of brixton

    Hmmm. . . ole gunnar solejaskar set to be cardiffs new manager it seems.
    hes arrived at the emirates with vincent ‘dictator’ tan.

  22. Mr Wise

    By the end we shall know whether Podolski is up to the CF role

    P.s – Igbo boy, seems like you have bounced back well after the gambon toungue-lashing.

  23. Guns of brixton

    we are about to see how well lukas does in the CF role.
    should be intresting. shame ozil aint playing with him though. . .

  24. Jeff

    That’s the team we wanted to see with Podolski leading the attack – i.e. no Giroud. Perhaps he needs to rest a little. If Poldi sets the ground on fire, Giroud wan’t see the light of day for a while.

  25. Charlie Boy

    I sincerely hope Santi puts in a performance today. We had a glimpse against West Ham, but not so against Newcastle.

    It might help his game if he stopped falling over relentlessly – just a thought.

  26. jwl

    Happy New Year Pedro, thanks for keeping us entertained for another year.

    I agree with the second string people needing to play well so Wenger can start rotating people. Players need a rest occasionally, that’s why we have a squad of players.

    And when did this concept of players being in red zone appear? I started paying attention to football in 1995 and I don’t remember fans talking about resting players, rotation, red zones. Players were expected to play every game, especially the defenders. Are players more finely tuned athletes now so they break down more? Are there more games with shorter intervals in between for rest?

    Oh Arsenal we love you!

  27. Guns of brixton

    Citehs depth and quality is quite simply stunning. it allows them to rotate and change their players so damn easily. if they get another CB, the league is theirs.
    we must bolster this month, we must.

  28. Gustav Graves

    Good question. I remember those days as well and no one seemed to worry about those things then.
    Sports science has obviously progressed and I imagine players did have issues before then, maybe it was just that the science didn’t know how to diagnose it correctly?

    You can always fall back on the adage;
    They don’t make em like they used to.

  29. Charlie Boy

    It’s probably a good thing that Citeh are breathing down our necks. Should stop any complacency we might start to feel.

    That said – if they’re a point behind us on the last day of the season, I wouldn’t be in a happy place that day!

  30. Nasri's Mouth

    Cardiff players will be looking to impress OGS today. Could be a really hard to break them down and they’ll press us

  31. Bamford13

    Happy New Year, all. And thank you, Pedro, for all of your hard work (fending off angry supporters, writing through hangovers, etc.).

    We all recognize that you’ve created something special here at Le Grove. So thank you.

    Disappointed not to see Bendtner in the starting XI, but perhaps he’ll get to spell Podolski in the 70th.

    Not opposed to Lukas, but I don’t think he’s active enough as a CF to make an effective one. Fantastic left foot, though, so will be surprised if he doesn’t get one.

  32. Bamford13

    Podolski looks decent so far. Will a competent performance from him as CF make all discussion of a January signing moot?

  33. Leedsgunner

    Man City will push us hard for the title that’s for sure. With their amazing fire power, I don’t think we’ll overtake the Citizens on goal difference… if we are going to win the title we’re going to do it the hard honest way — on wins and points totals rather than goal difference.

    Obviously if we get another clinical striker, this situation might change… I have doubt Wenger will spend big… talk of “special players” is one we’ve all heard before.

  34. useroz

    Monreal had a killer cross and no one went for it.. Where’s the striker?

    MF not looking good. Except Cazorla, wilshere, arteta, flamini do side and back passes!!

    Crosses from sagna and monreal could be crucial.

  35. useroz

    Podi has less than 3 touches of the ball by my count. It aint working…

    Puit Bendtner on and Podi back to LW.

    Not a pen to me too. Shoot or pass, wilshere. U are not good dribbling.

  36. Bamford13

    To bring more energy into our play/attack, we should get rid of either Arteta or Flamini, bringing Cazorla or Rosicky into the center, and we should put NB52 up top and Podolski out left, as follows:


  37. Arsene's Nurse

    FFS when we get behind them why is no-one gambling on getting in the 6 yard box or the far post? Golden opportunity missed.

  38. useroz

    Walcott got to at least hit the target from there under little pressure.

    Still waiting for our first shot on goal…

    Should tat a yeloow ref??

  39. Al

    why is the best player and most creative on the left while wilshere who has been struggling to be creative is playing behind the striker?

  40. Bamford13

    You may be right, jason. He just doesn’t do enough off the ball. Not enough runs, angles made. Not the right runs. Lazy, it seems.

  41. zeus

    jasongmsJanuary 1, 2014 15:33:17
    lets play podolski are a striker they said :/


    Classic case of the guy who is injured is the answer to our ills.

  42. Arsene's Nurse

    Why is Podolski dropping so deep? Does he really have to do that instead of pushing onto the last defender?

  43. Nasri's Mouth


    Takes a while for it to click, but it’s never going to be a perfect combination. Expect to see Bendtner if we’re not winning by 65 mins

  44. useroz

    Think it’s more formation than conditions. Lack chemistry too as someone put it.

    Wenger faviritism at play……

    Wilshere playing ACM not Cazorla is criminal. Wilshere not rubbish but still useless most of the time, so far.

    Posi is NOT a fucking striker. How many times he touches the ball?? Podi is a shooter tats all.

    Put Bendtner on, to sub one of Arteta/ flamini, or wilshere.

    Want to see Gnabry to run at them too.

  45. JA_Gooner83

    Why are both flamini and Arteta playing?

    They limit our attacking so much… What is wrong with Wenger?

    Get one of them off move wilshere into the role and get Bendnter on

  46. Arsene's Nurse

    Yep, agree, I’d rather see Wilshere moved back, Caz in the middle who is more creative, Pod back on the left and Bendy on. It’s a far more balanced side with greater threats.

    Even putting Wally upfront and bring on Gnabry would be better, with Pod left, Jack back alongside Flamini or Arteta; one of which would be subbed.