Above Spurs. Again.

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Feeling mad rough this morning, and for the first time in an age, it’s not booze related. My morning hasn’t been helped by the full bag of maltesers I dropped on the floor this morning. Or the person on the bus who smells like sour milk. But hey, I’ll soldier on.

Don’t worry about me.

It’ll be fine.

Newcastle. What to say about that. They’re sitting on 45 points. They have been for a while. They’re safe. They played like they were on the beach. Times up for Pardew. What a disgraceful performance. 6 losses on the bounce. Incredible. Shows how much those players respect him.

The Arsenal players looked embarrassed for them at times. Ozil and Ramsey sat in second gear and destroyed Newcastle. It was like the senior team beating the under 8s.

The first came from a set play. Koscielny got in front of Krul by about a yard and scuffed the ball home.

Our second came from Ozil. Newcastle allowed Giroud to break the offside trap by an absolute mile. The Frenchman had his first save, his second fell to Ozil who tapped home with ease.

In the second half, more good play from Ramsey and Ozil saw the German fizz a delightful ball onto the head of Giroud who nodded in for his first of the night.

So that was that. If City beat Everton, which I suspect they will. We retain 4th spot again. Hooray!

I can’t stress the importance of top four, even if we can’t the Champions League.

Key points from the game are standard.

Giroud really does need to be our second choice striker. He’s not fast enough not is he anywhere near the quality of finisher we need at the highest level. A top class striker would have had a hattrick last night. He’s not top quality. We need top quality.

The team is better when Ozil and Ramsey are in it. That much is clear. Not sure why people are peddling that like it’s a surprise. Every team is better with their best players. What Arsene is doing is performing a terrific job of indicating bad luck prevented the league win this year. Trouble is, he’ll have half the fanbase fooled. They don’t understand the basics of how injuries occur, they don’t dig into the detail and to them, that’s right, poor old Wenger was mugged by Lady Luck.

It’s cynical and it’s nonsense. Wenger’s management style injures players. His lack of a squad means we can’t cover this injuries. So whatever way you look at it, he’s the man at fault. Not Lady Luck.

Amazing how good he is at spinning things to suit his vision. Much like the ‘we had to sell to survive’ which we now know wasn’t true.

In other news, Spurs can no longer finish above us. Hooray again. An earlier celebration this year. Last year it was the final day. Always a good feeling. I guess the reason it feels a bit flatter this year is because we’d have preferred to be celebrating the day no other team in the league could finish above us.

Anyway. A lovely three points. One more game to go at home. Then we’re done for another season at The Grove. Amazing how quickly the year has passed.

See you in the comments.

1,112 Responses to “Above Spurs. Again.”

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  1. kwik fit

    25m buy back clause for Cesc . I would certainly go for it even though he’s not quite the type of player we need. Come back cesc we all still love you.
    Fast Striker, mobile defensive mid and Cesc Baby and were laughing.

  2. Carts

    Mandzukic is up for a punch up tonight. He’s not letting any of his team mates get bullied.

    Not like when Barkley shoved Arteta and all our players turned into Stevie Wonder

  3. Arsenal 1886-2006

    All over.

    Dan.
    The very top teams are judged by what they do in Europe above the domestic league, and this season Bayern look vulnerable.
    I honestly think that the Bayern players are not comfortable with the way Pep plays the game, they are about pace and power, not possession.

  4. tunnygriffboy

    Don’t really care who wins although take a miracle for Bayern to win now. But god, I hate Pepe.

    Since winning the league Bayern have really taken their foot of the gas. May well be some of their players available. Also means if RM win CL Ancellotti may stay so man u can’t get hold of him

    Sendings off anyone ?

  5. N5

    I can’t wait for this to overspill. Bayern have to attack leaving themselves very open to Madrid’s counter! this could be a bad tempered ass kicking!!

  6. TitsMcgee

    Trying too hard to turn them into Barca Version 2.0

    If fairness I think his players flipped the switch after they won the league so early thinking they could flip it back on and it just hasn’t happened.

    Madrid- Chelsea will make for a great final I guess.

    Lots of storylines.

  7. Dan Ahern

    86-06 — Could be. But let’s keep in mind this is a CL semi. Hardly commonplace for managers. Pep’s CV at Barca is untouchable and he totally steamrolled all of Germany in his first season there. He didn’t make in in the CL, but it’s absurd to equate going out to RM with being unproven.

  8. Johnty79

    Guardiola truly is a shit manager who is getting more like wenger every day.

    He inherited the greatest barca youth team ever.
    Yaya and villa were signed by the chairman.

    They had a team that would win the champs league four seasons on the trot. But he starts to be an idiot. Selling Yaya and playing messi up front. Playing midfielders in defence and mid fielders up front.

    What an idiot. If bayern kept jenks they would of won it again this year.

    Any fool can see that Martinez was the best midfielder in the world last year an he desires to move him to defence. What a fool.

  9. Dissenter

    The NBA just banned the owner of the LA clippers, Donald Sterling from the game for life because he made racist comments.

    UEFA and FIFA, take note.
    That’s how you deal with the problem, polite punishments and measly fines are not enough.

  10. TitsMcgee

    If you want to turn them into Barca do it gradually. Don’t take a well oiled machine and put in a gasoline engine into a diesel vehicle.

  11. BacaryisGod

    Midwest:

    Well, I think Balotelli would represent a huge risk but like Suarez before, maybe our team needs a little crazy to add to all the choirboys and I mean truly talented fireworks in the bathroom crazy not egotistical brat Bendtner crazy.

    Maybe Arsene can pull off a loan deal if a sale is too risky but I have a feeling if AC Milan are ready to let him go, they’ll want him gone on a permanent basis.

  12. TitsMcgee

    The age of Tippy tappy is over.. Real Madrid is who we should be copying not the Barcelona of 5 years ago.”

    Bayern last year is who we should be copying.

  13. Johnty79

    Forgot lahm at dm also another rediculas experiment that there is no need for.

    Truely guardola is stupid and would lose to mourinho in the final anyway.

  14. leon

    if i was in charge of arsenal i would keep all of the defenders,in midfield were i think there are too many players play just behind and i he striker i would dump diaby arteter and risicky and i get at least 2 more pacy direct wingers and a top dm player.up front with exception of thoe i would dump all of them and get two world class strikers but this would never happen

  15. Carts

    “If you want to turn them into Barca do it gradually. Don’t take a well oiled machine and put in a gasoline engine into a diesel vehicle.”

    I remember Robben comin out, during an interview, and said that Pep over complicates the simple things. Pep didn’t like that

  16. TitsMcgee

    Perhaps Martinez on the bench was not the best course of action.”

    I think managers out-think themselves sometimes.

    Don’t get me wrong I’d take Pep in a heartbeat but I’ve been scratching my head over Javi Martinez to CB/bench for a while.

  17. Johnty79

    I blame wenger for guardola turning crap.

    Wenger started this changing of players positions. Moving toure to centre back, turning youth team right back into a dm. Playing poldolski wide left. When will wenger learn.

  18. TitsMcgee

    Damn 3-0

    lol

    The German media are going to ROAST Pep tonight. Roast him. I’m talking shish(sp?) kebab

  19. Radio Raheem

    Really pissed with what Pep has done to Bayern. Looked like the best side in the CL ever and now, even, Arsene thinks they’re more vulnerable.

  20. zeus

    The pace of Bale and Ronaldo is just incredible.

    Hopefully Arsene realises that the time of tippy tappy is going/gone. Time to go back to what made him great.

  21. TitsMcgee

    Football goes in cycles. I think tippy tappy is over for now, may come back in future though”

    Germans were never going to excel at the tippy-tappy stuff. Just not their style. He’s forcing a square peg.

  22. Dissenter

    Tits,
    “The age of Tippy tappy is over. . Real Madrid is who we should be copying not the Barcelona of 5 years ago.”

    Tell that to Le senile,

  23. Arsenal 1886-2006

    Dan

    I wouldn’t agree with unproven like some on the BBC say, but I do think tippy tappy football has been deciphered and negated by the better managers. Pep has to show that he can adapt to other systems of play, I believe he can but time will tell.

  24. jwl

    What going on with bayern tonight. Was busy with some work and just turned the match on now and bayern losing 0-3 – bayern dire or madrid awesome tonight?

  25. tunnygriffboy

    This time last year Mourinho would have taken this team and parked the bus.

    Bayern CB are so slow. We caused them problems first 20 at home, Madrid a different animal. Get Kos signed up asap.

    Alonso out of final. Great for Chelsea if they get through.

  26. Wallace

    An I the only one who feels Kroos and Schweini cancel each other out?

    Schweini definitely not the dominant fulcrum he was last year.

  27. Dissenter

    You wonder why no team has retained the CL.
    Bayern got too cocky, they’ve destroyed their domestic league and have only themselves to blame.

    Guardiola might not survive this. He was already tetchy after the Bayern board publicly criticized him.

  28. kwik fit

    Pep has proven to also be tactically naive. With the players at his disposal in his managerial career he has underachieved.

  29. salparadisenyc

    “An I the only one who feels Kroos and Schweini cancel each other out?”

    With Javi Martinez on the bench.. makes little sense.

  30. Dan Ahern

    86-06 — I think you may be right. Guardiola is an unbelievably proven and successful manager, but no system if flawless. I don’t think Guardiola plays the same Barca system at BM but nonetheless same principles. Top manager and top talent can exploit it. You’re seeing a top manager and the best countering talent on earth right now.

  31. TitsMcgee

    Guardiola might not survive this. He was already tetchy after the Bayern board publicly criticized him.”

    Pep’s job is safe. If they didn’t win their league then I’d agree. No way they sack him yet.

  32. Keyser

    What’s the fascination with choosing one of Counter attacking or Possession football ? The best teams used to be capable of both.

    We aren’t really going to be able to copy either team, you’ve got one ridiculous pool of talent, super team, versus another ridiculous pool of talent, super team.

    It’s simulataneously depressing and kind of car-crash style engaging.

  33. Arsene's Nurse

    Jesus, what a bunch of fucking pussies. Oh the ball hit me I’m so hurt. How these players who fake injury don’t get a good kicking in the tunnel after the game is a mystery.

  34. Cesc Appeal

    The death of tippy tappy football.

    Wenger take note, powerful, fast athletic sides are the order of the day.

  35. jwl

    Thank you MidwestGun. I thought scoreline was mistake when first turned on tv. Pep in difficult situation at bayern this season – domestic double in his first year at club will be seen as failure.

  36. Cesc Appeal

    Are there people actually asking if Pep might get the boot?!

    Then we look at Wenger sitting comfortably at Arsenal.

  37. Keyser

    Ageing Barcelona were beaten by the more dominant, fresher, Bayern, Ageing Bayern are being beaten by the more dominant, fresher, Real Madrid.

    I don’t even want to commit to that pattern, Dortmund battered Madrid last year, seriously how do you draw conclusions ? Can anyone make sense of it ? Or is it just how extreme football can be at this level ?

  38. Radio Raheem

    Pep isn’t a bad manager just not as good as his results suggest. Having the best sides at your disposal certainly helps.

    People are quick to point to Bayern winning their league at record time. But it’s impossible to say if they wouldn’t have done the same with Heynckes this season.

    Anyone with half a brain cell can see that Bayern have looked more vulnerable in the CL this season. I haven’t watched them that much in the Bundesliga to give a definitive opinion. Besides, the rest of the league aren’t up to much.

    People using anecdotal evidence of his ‘hardwork’, manic touchline restlessness (PASSION??!) and meticulousness as some sort of evidence of greatness have fallen into the trap of obsessing over form rather than focusing on substance.

  39. MidwestGun

    Peps situation is the exact reason Arsene isn’t going to another club ever, he wouldn’t last one season. All this talk of PSG making an offer is amusing bullshit.

  40. salparadisenyc

    “Tippy tap” works with Messi, Iniesta and Xavi and makes sense.

    Turning Bayern into the style of his former side from the successes of last season is an ego trip. Their not nearly as decisive and defensively. You could see it in our tie with them.

  41. Dissenter

    Keyser.
    I agree with you about the ridiculous talent available on both sides.

    We’ll disagree on the next sentence though;
    We get listed among the Bayern and Madrids of the world when they discuss earnings, however our wealth is stored in a bank vault while theirs is on the football field.

    I am filled with shame to think we abused this competition by fielding the postman as CF in the most important game of the season for us.

    Our ethos should be that “you win to grow’ rather that “you hoard to grow”

  42. Wallace

    “seriously how do you draw conclusions ? Can anyone make sense of it ? Or is it just how extreme football can be at this level ?”

    yeah, remember the good old days when semi finals used to be cagey affairs?

  43. Keyser

    TYAG – Nah you wouldn’t, you’d be earning a few hundred grand a month, knee-deep in clunge, I think you’d deal with it.

  44. salparadisenyc

    To be fair to Pep he said it was a massive work in progress and had no idea how it would go in his prematch at the Emirates.

  45. Arsenal 1886-2006

    Bayern last season were definitely more scary and efficient, Gary Neville said during the first leg that this is not the destructive Bayern of last season but a possession Bayern and they do not look the same force.

  46. Dan Ahern

    TYAG — Oh please. Where do you think those players came from? Oh right, same exact place as Pep. Xavi even played with Pep. Later Pep returned and became part of the organisation, managing Barca B and then the senior club right after. He helmed their utter dominance. But no, it was just because of Xavi and Messi. No way those guys benefitted from the manager, only the other way around, right?

  47. MarbleHall

    Radio Raheem
    “Pep isn’t a bad manager just not as good as his results suggest. Having the best sides at your disposal certainly helps.”

    The same can be said about Mourinho only managing super rich clubs.

  48. kwik fit

    TYAg

    I’ve had my suspicions for years as well . I think she’s relieved to finally come out though 😉

  49. Romford Pele

    While I’m happy for Madrid, this should be the case tbh. They have the best team in the world and have spent more than enough money. The fact they haven’t reached a final since 2001 doesn’t reflect well on them tbh when you factor in how much they spend