Arsenal awkwardly traverse tricky Swansea tie

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Arsenal crashed back into Premier League football with a messy 3-2 victory over beleaguered Swansea. Momentum was very much in the home sides favour heading into the game, but The Swans had the intangible buzz of a new manager as well as a pretty exceptional 5 game unbeaten run against us at The Emirates.

Theo Walcott was the star man putting to bed a bad week for England with 2 of the easiest goals he’ll score this season. The first one was some far post defensive shenanigans from Swansea that allowed him to poke the ball home opportunistically. His second was just as embarrassing from a Swansea perspective, Theo found himself unmarked alone after his marker comically launched for the ball, Theo controlled, turned on sixpence and smashed his shot past the on-rushing Fabianski.

You kind of hoped that’d be the end of the game, but Swansea made their way back into the game when Xhaka dangerously tried to showboat outside our box, he rolled his foot over the ball, forgetting he needed to touch the ball, he collapsed in a heap, Sigurdsson picked up the ball, jinked inside Koscielny and span a shot to the far corner leaving Cech no chance. A superb finish and the start of a bad day for Xhaka.

Ozil finished our scoring with a superb second half volley he roofed into the top of the near side netting, after watching a looping Sanchez cross attentively. A great way to celebrate his birthday, though it has to be said, the lack of assists is telling from the German. The magic isn’t quite there this season, which is odd considering how much pace he has to play with this season.

Just as I was complaining we needed to rotate in some of our subs to rest jet lagged legs, Barrow absolutely roasted Monreal on the right, made his way into the box picking out Tomas for an easy sweep home of a finish. 4 minutes later Xhaka made a clumsy late challenge on Barrow (I think) for causing us such a menace at home and was brutally dealt out a red card. Can’t help but think nine times out of ten that’d barely receive a yellow card…

Wenger brought on the cavalry, Coquelin steadied the ship… but we still faced challenges down the right with Monreal not having his best day. Gibbs came on to help out there.

We saw out the game, three points delivered after a nasty international break… joint top of the Premier League with Manchester City dropping points to Everton.

A very good day.

So what to think? As many of the ‘battered by Wenger Arsenal crowd’ are so keen to point out, it feels like we’re usually here at this time of the year… hope, at its peak, but with the underlying feeling that we’ve seen this too many times before.

It was great to pick up 3 points, and don’t get me wrong, these games are always tricky… but the performance wasn’t as comfortable as you’d like. We should have battered Swansea early on because they were absolutely pony. We didn’t, we allowed them back and we made it tough for ourselves.

I’m hoping that’s just the handbrake and not a sign some of our players are starting to fatigue. Sanchez was pretty quiet today and I think we can all agree that Ozil is not looking the majestic man he was for parts of last season. Sanchez had 2 shots zero on target, one of them was blocked. Ozil was way down the pecking order for pass completion, dropping a shocking 75%…

Anyway, we managed to steer a victory where normally we’d drop a draw. I just hope Wenger uses the next few weeks to bring some new talent into the side. Boro, Reading and Ludogorets don’t need the full first team… we need our best players fresh for December, which I cannot stress enough times, is looking brutal.

Right, see you in the comments!

362 Responses to “Arsenal awkwardly traverse tricky Swansea tie”

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  1. grooveydaddy

    I’m a bit more guarded with my Mustafi praise. Hasn’t been overly tested as of yet. Did well (with Kos) against Costa, but was all at sea against PSG. Also that 2nd Swansea goal was on him mostly.

    But his partnership with Kos is developing nicely. Let’s see how they fare against the better sides. Plus his ability on the ball is a definite asset.

  2. Louis Almeida

    grooverydaddy, wasn’t PSG only Mustafi’s second game for us though? Seems a bit harsh to judge him off that considering he had no pre-season and had just returned from injury?

    Bamford10, yes the whole team is functioning well, and when that happens certain individuals will thrive. This Ozil seems to be playing more as a second striker hence the goals and lack of assists. I know you must’ve loved that 5 player dribble from your boy Iwobi 😉

  3. underrated Coq

    Bamford10, to be fair Walcott was showing continuous improvement as a player–at the very least in his end product– in the ages 16-24 right until he sustained that ACL injury. Chamberlain, by comparison, has shown no clear signs of improvement whatsoever in his Arsenal career.

  4. underrated Coq


    ‘Sanchez had an assist against Swansea but he hasn’t scored for a while for both club and country… a sign of mental and physical tiredness?’

    Think its more to do with the number of shots he’s taking. He doesn’t take as many as he used to when he played wide forward.

    What I noticed, especially in the last couple of games, is he’s focusing more on creating chances for his teammates rather than have a pop at goal even when he’s in good positions. Besides, the goals he’s scored so far haven’t been classic Sanchez goals. Give him time, he’s still adapting to the role.

  5. Sam

    Oxlade went on Tv with his dad(agent)
    maybe they’re pushing for improved contract
    they think Arsenal super sub should get more money, same as Jack

  6. Wallace

    underrated coq

    “What I noticed, especially in the last couple of games, is he’s focusing more on creating chances for his teammates rather than have a pop at goal even when he’s in good positions. Besides, the goals he’s scored so far haven’t been classic Sanchez goals. Give him time, he’s still adapting to the role.”

    yeah, being the main man and always at the centre of the attacking action suits him, and seems to be bringing out the best in him as a team player.

  7. Sam

    Anyway, that was just a silly joke

    He said he’s not happy with himself, fair enough
    time to start working hard
    Most sons of ex professional footballers failed because they think they can walk in n emulate their dad easily.
    you cannot compare Oxlade with Campbell
    Campbell probably learned his football in the street n had to go to tough places like greece on loan.
    would Daddy chamberlain let his pampered son go toughen up in Portugal?

  8. underrated Coq


    Yes, even though we haven’t seen much of the qualities we usually associate with Sanchez and Ozil, I think both are giving more rounded performances as team players.

  9. Sam

    I think best place to send pampered English boys is Africa

    Let him have just one pair of boot for match games n he trains bare feet for a whole season

  10. vicky

    Icardi has burnt his bridges with Inter Milan fans, I can’t see him continue playing there for long. Would he be a good replacement for Giroud ?

  11. Carts

    Must needed win at the weekend.

    Vital that we win those kind of games, so early into the season and with our squad in-tact.

    In my eyes, it’s unacceptable to not take maximum points from a team like Swansea when it is on Giroud we have unavailable.

    Going forward, it’s all about maintaining the momentum and rotating, accordingly as mentioned by Rhys.

  12. vicky


    Yes, a scumbag alright. He’s been in news for wrong reasons as much as he’s been for scoring goals. But he’s younger than Lacazzete, has played in a tougher league and probably will cost less. Will be interesting to see If Wenger goes for him should he become available, his off-field antics might be a turn off as you say.

    Strongly rooting for Liverpool to beat United today and all but knock them out of the title race.

  13. Carts

    re: Ox on Goal on Sunday

    I watched the full segment where both Kammy and Shepherd took the liberty to ask Ox some rather defining questions.

    I think Ox came across quite well. You could sense the frustration in tone at times, but it was far from arrogant or anything like that.

    Essentially, it centred around his diabolical centre back-like statistics, his lack of game time and short to medium term objectives.

    I don’t think Ox said anything wrong per se, and even his old man kept didn’t have any Chris Eubank Snr moments.

    I think Ox, in his mind, knows he’s good enough, or at least has the attributes to play regularly.

    Imo, and the majority of us, it’s the way he struggles at putting those elements together cohesively.

    I can’t see hit at Arsenal past this season at this current rate, which is disappointing.

    Said it before and I’ll say it again, he’s not a CM player, he’s not considered a RW starter; thus imo, bung him up front in an FA cup game of if we 5-0 up against Ludogrets.

  14. Leedsgunner

    What about Lucien Favre as a candidate for our next manager?

    I’ve been mightily impressed with how he has completely transformed Balotelli… that takes some great man management skills… he’s done what many managers couldn’t do. Worth a look?

  15. Louis Almeida

    Vicky, he just signed a new contract last week though so they’d want maximum money for him. I mean I’ve seen Lacazette score in the CL so I rate him higher because of that. But for sure his relationship with Inter surely can’t go past this season after what he said about the Inter ultras. The market for strikers is small, we still have to wait and see what Perez does/if anything. And then we have to continue to see how well this Alexis experiment works (only with Walcott playing IMO).

    Liverpool really should run over United this evening as their style is what United don’t like. United don’t have many press-resistant players either. That said, Jose loves it when the odds are against him so you’d imagine he relishes these sorts of games. Probably looking forward to Chelsea at the weekend too. Also, pressing teams normally tire at the 60/70 minute mark so if you’re still in the game then, you have a very good chance to beat them.

  16. Wallace


    isn’t Lucien Favre Wenger’s best mate? not sure that would go down well on here. must have given Wenger a glowing report on Xhaka after he left Gladbach.

  17. Carts

    Would be hilarious if Nice do the unthinkable, wouldn’t it.

    Besides Balotelli, Dante and Belhanda, their team is bob-basic.

    Top 4 is doable. Though you’d really expect PSG, Monaco and Lyon to be in there somewhere come May.

  18. Dissenter

    What’s Oxlade doing on a Sunday show with his father?
    Who cares if he was humble. For your info, it’s commonplace to get a list of questions before hand. This was all calculated to pressure the club.
    Can you imagine if every player looking to extract a favorable contract renewal or more play time went to the media?

    Wenger has to draw a line in the sand.
    Freeze Oxlade from the first team, let him play with the U-21s and send him off on loan in January.
    That’s what any top manger would do.

  19. Wallace


    “Liverpool really should run over United this evening as their style is what United don’t like.”

    would love it if they do. and would really ramp up the pressure on Mourinho ahead of the Chelsea game next weekend. two defeats would certainly leave me with a bounce in my step.

  20. Sam

    Chamberlain will succeed at Arsenal
    not as a winger, he’s at a right club where he’s given time to mature
    The impatient ones want him thrown out of the club asap, not gonna happen
    we are not Chelsea, we are the Arsenal

  21. Louis Almeida

    Dissenter, most likely Ox was asked to come onto the show? I have no problem with that, footballers are always doing extra curricular stuff and have media stuff to do as part of their job. Really and truthfully though Ox should look closer to home as to why he’s not playing. Wenger has given him ample opportunity.

  22. vicky


    Yes, should be cracker of a game. Liverpool have a good track record of beating big teams in last 2-3 years. This season despite their tough fixture they have been scintillating against all the big teams although you could say we handed them a victory due to our unpreparedness. One thing is pretty much certain- Liverpool will play as a team whereas United will rely on individual brilliance of some of their players.

  23. Wallace

    the Ox has to play better when he gets the chance. after a solid pre-season he’s back to looking hesitant and short of confidence. I do think the rep he has on here though as a fun-loving social media clown who doesn’t care enough is probably way off the mark.

  24. Sam

    RedTruth said:

    Wenger is going nowhere

    Architects don’t walk out on unfinished projects
    you have to wait Until Arsenal fc hit £1billion cash surplus
    Still there is a possibility he’ll sack sir Chips n takes over as Chairman

  25. Redtruth

    What happened to Wenger’s man management skills and development artistry or is it down to players themselves to man manage and hone their skills alone….?

  26. Sam

    Its called QoS in technology, Quality of service
    Even a computer device cannot do everything at the same time
    Wenger sacrificed coaching n prioritised on building the club first
    now the club is not longer broke he can relax n slow getting back to proper coaching again.
    He also built the best football academy in England

  27. Sam

    Chamberlain is struggling, really?
    65k a week Arsenal super sub is progressing well
    next season he’ll be promoted with 100k weekly pay checque

    New Walcott

  28. Arsenal not Arsene

    The man boy Sam at it again. Ox is not on the right track. Think he’s mad iwobi is doing more than what he has achieved in his whole Arsenal career. Overrated english youngsters will have to learn the hard way.

  29. Carts


    Fair points raised.

    I guess two arguments can be made here:

    1) why is a super-sub on £65k p/w going on Goals on Sunday when he should be getting his shit together and figure out why Iwobi has left him trailing.

    2) as Louis said, Ox has media obligations, nor is it uncommon for players to feature on certain football platforms.

    It did look come across as thinly veiled at certain times, when asked about his future.

    I don’t think he’ll struggle for takers come next summer.

    I’d definitely say that he should get his house in check before he starts moaning about knocking on the gaffers door ; and on that token, I have zero confidence in Wenger’s ability to develop players.

  30. Sam


    Wenger changed Arsenal now
    its a family full of love n forgiveness, immature boy can go speak gibberish on TV n still get away with it publicly. see how Wenger plays it down at the next pressa.
    under George Mugabe, Chamberlain will be cast off, sent in exile or sold to flipping Bristol city

  31. Sam

    Give that kinda interview under George Graham, boy you just signed your p45

    and you guys call Wenger dictator ha ha ha ha

    Chamberlain will even start the next game

  32. WrightIsGod

    i don’t know what you guys saw but I see a team that has learnt nothing.

    That Xhaka mistake is indicative of our team and if it doesn’t happen to him it happens to someone else.

    Against a proper pressing team (ie Liverpool or dare I say Spurs) we will hemirage goals…

  33. kingHenry

    October 17, 2016 10:47:10
    I think best place to send pampered English boys is Africa
    Let him have just one pair of boot for match games n he trains bare feet for a whole season”

    Please tell me all about Africa, dumb as racist idiot. You’ve probably never been to Africa and know very little about it and here you are talking out of your arse about training barefoot.

    Sam, you’re just incredibly stupid and you talk shit all the time, you know next to nothing about football and yet you insist on talking about things you don’t know. I hope to God that you’re just some dumb kid, and not someone’s father or something.

    Daft cunt

  34. Sam


    I didn’t know that establishing a boot camp to get boys to toughen up is racist
    Sending Chamberlain to Africa for tough education is racist
    Nigerian parents do that all the time
    they are surely racist.
    I am not going to insult you back, maybe I should seek permission from Pedro first

  35. Sam


    I have never been to Africa?
    let me check my travel history:

    Ivory Coast

    Looks like Africa to me

  36. kingHenry

    Yes it’s absolutely necessary to talk shit about the whole continent. How many African football camps have you actually seen? but yeah we all play football barefoot.

    Just don’t bring it up if you know nothing about it.

    This comment is just a microcosm of you general behavior. You make random assumptions with no factual basis.

  37. tee

    Sam ain’t trying to pull Africa down but just using the continent as a reference point to channel his point. when you look at great footballers you find out they have passed through a lot of things and conditions which helped to toughen them up unlike england where a kid kicks a balloon then he gets hyped as the next Ronaldo.

  38. Red&White4life

    Sam Keane has forgot the land of big talkers and the land of morons in his so called “travelling history” lol

    In other news, the FA are not considering wenger anymore for the national team, they wants an english man…
    That’s a fOking great news, 3 more years at Arsenal for wenger!!

  39. Sam

    If we send Chambo to Brazil he’s gonna play beach football with his boots on

    Man you are so dumb
    barefoot football exists we all know it, not an insult at all

  40. Sam

    George Weah, Abedi Pele, Roger Milla all great african footballers started playing barefoot on a tough pitch

    Dude please keep your racist card in your pocket

  41. freddylekgunner

    Sam even school Children don’t play football barefooted in Africa nowadays. When was the last time you were in Africa? You mentioned Egypt and Nigeria, you definitely didn’t go to a football camp there.

  42. Sam

    I was in Kenya early this year
    I actually travel from Mombasa to Matoga, I am sponsoring 2 kids there in a boarding school.
    This is actually my private life but you guys acts like you know everything n I don’t know anything.
    you are sooooo wrong

  43. kingHenry

    October 17, 2016 14:35:47
    Sam ain’t trying to pull Africa down but just using the continent as a reference point to channel his point. when you look at great footballers you find out they have passed through a lot of things and conditions which helped to toughen them up unlike england where a kid kicks a balloon then he gets hyped as the next Ronaldo.”

    Fair enough, but being from Africa doesn’t mean a hard life. Iwobi probably had a much more comfortable upbringing than most English youngsters. I live in Nigeria, and have never had to play football barefoot. Walk into any football camp and you’ll see kids with full kits.

    The problem with Alex is a bad attitude. Claiming that will be fixed by spending a week in Nigeria is stupid and naive. He’ll just spend his entire week clubbing and filling up on fat.

  44. kingHenry

    Jay Jay was Nigerian and didn’t exactly grow up in nice conditions, but had an even worse attitude. He was one of the most talented players of his generation and achieved nothing because he had no drive, and just wanted to have fun.

    Playing barefoot sure did help him.

  45. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    You seem like a nice lad,

    Just ease up over ott pro Arsenal like a kid who has double panini stickers of ozil.

    Let’s just wait an see how the season develops

    Many here seen the script already

  46. China

    Arsenal have the best football academy in England? How many prospects from our academy alone (not bought at 17+) have been up to much?

    Southampton have produced more good players in the last 10 years than we have.

  47. China

    We have some of the world’s best facilities.

    But I could build the world’s best gym. Doesn’t mean all my customers will turn into arnies.

    Arsenal’s glorious academy consist mainly of buying already top talents who are close to finishing their development like cesc and bellerin and finishing the job with them before giving them chances with the first team

    How much credit does our academy really deserve for that?