Arsenal vs West Brom Match Preview

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via @t0wey (instagram)

via @t0wey (instagram)

We’ll start the day with a quote from Arsene Wenger.

“I’ve been long enough in the job to put that into perspective as people who love the club, who are really disappointed on Monday morning and get their frustration out. We have to live with that.

“It doesn’t mean they are not ready to change their mind if we win the next game.”

Well, can’t deny that, win the next 10 games straight and look, minds will be changing left, right and centre. Such a shame this comment is part of the Wenger ground-hog comments we’ve had over the years. They seem to come earlier as he disappoints earlier.

Today, we have a nice home game against a West Brom, they’re sitting pretty in 8th after losing two of the their last 4 and winning the other two. I’m trying to dig around for interesting stats on them, but they’re hard to come across (though this story on Rondon was pretty good). Tony Pulis is all about sustaining quiet average. Never pushing for glory, never winning cups, never threatening to inflict the league with a brand of football, so fine, Wenger and Pep jump ship for immediate tutelage. Imagine that being your legacy? Bland and average…

Anyway, he’s been a thorn in our side enough times to worry about today. That said, we’ve had a few days off since our last shameful performance against City, we’ll have pumped some energy into the legs and hopefully a few of the players receiving PLAYSTATION 4 VR HEADSETS WILL HAVE THEM PUMPED ABOUT LIFE AND STUFF.

I also might be going a touch ambitious here, but Tony P is strategic when it comes to hoovering up points. He understands that he has a small squad and he’ll know the chances of him doing anything against us today are remote, so we might see a bit of a rotation so he can have fresher players for Southampton and an easy 3 points against Hull. Not that we should bank on that.

Hard to predict beyond the favoured 11 today. Aaron Ramsey featured in the training pics that are floating around the web but I’m not sure he’s going to be ready. The coach said the Ox will be back soon, so he might be out from there… so the starting 11 feels pretty simple to predict.


Bellerin Kos Gabriel Monreal

Xhaka Coquelin


Theo Sanchez Iwobi

I think I’d be looking at giving Gibbs a bit of a run after a few pretty bad games for Monreal. I’m not sure what’s going on there this season, but he’s gone from looking a total warrior to a man who is struggling to deal with that loss of pace that happens at 30 years old. Alarming whatever it is, but we don’t really have a great back up option. There’s talk of Wenger jumping for Valencia full back Gaya, but I’m not sure if that’s for now or in the summer. Whatever the deal, we need to do something about that because the second half of the season is going to be far harder for us and you can bet your bottom dollar Bayern have scouts sniffing out our weaknesses as we speak.

Amusing reading the Telegraph from the other day, Jose Mourinho wants to buy a whole new defence as well as add Antoine Griezmann to his starting 11 (£300m). You don’t even need to be a good coach when you’re him, just throw enough money at the problem, which is crazy money, and hope that’ll fix it. I don’t understand what the board at United think about Ed Woodward. What is he doing over there? I understand that signing big names is part of the deal, but does every player have to cost £35m? Feels like very little thought goes into what they’re doing over there. But hey, great fun if you’re a United fan.

Right, that’s me done. Enjoy the game today, see you in the comments!

214 Responses to “Arsenal vs West Brom Match Preview”

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  1. London gunner


    “Even festive cheer can’t spare Ramsey from the usual bashing, poor lad.”

    When he plays very poorly 9 times out of 10, people aren’t going to be charitable no matter the Christmas spirit 😉


  2. Thank you and goodnight


    You keep being positive, be positive for me too because I’ve seen this film before and know how it ends so struggling to be positive

  3. Al

    please don’t play Sanchez on the left, the guy is great but he is wasted out there.

    Also why start defensive minded midfielders today. Also how predictable are we as a side, where is the flair and the willingness to take a chance?

    Team and players are extremely static

  4. Rambo Ramsey

    Personally I’m bored of the stasis. I’m sure there are thousands of fans of other clubs who would bite their hands off for Arsenal level of consistency, but I find myself yearning for change, any change, doesn’t even have to be positive.

  5. London gunner


    Ramsey didn’t do anything of note apart from completely fuck up a scoring opportunity where at the very least he should have had a shot on target.

    The fact we scored was a mixture of great moment from giroud and the fact West Brom tired and inevitably couldn’t keep us out for the full 90.

    As for proposing a midfield partnership where we are more porous at the back, great idea Einstein. We’ve just gone on our worst or one of are worst runs for conceding goals in premier league football. Let’s confound these problems further…

    As for coquelin he actually played well. He placed a very nice ball into the box at one stage in the first half that someone blundered don’t see what Ramsey did better aside from missing two goal scoring opportunities.

  6. Dream10

    London gunner

    Coquelin was alright. Just felt we could have taken more risks. My gripe was more with Iwobi. We need another player who can create goal scoring opportunities in the final third. He is not ready IMO.

  7. grooveydaddy

    Iwobi’s form has fallen off a cliff.

    He should be nowhere near the starting XI, or even the bench for most games.

  8. Carts

    Ramsey has, and barring that period when he was out of form, been a terrible team player.

    Having not seen any of today’s game I can almost picture Ramsey to some Power league shit

  9. Wenker-wanger

    Unconvincing…. A win that probably does more harm than good. Wenger claws his bony body up from the cliff edge. The most fortunate man in football….. The man you would be unwise to play cards with.

  10. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Sadness is down to Wenger
    He has single handily dismantled the togetherness of the supporters…
    His only aim is to keep his job at 10m a year or take the PSG one for 12…

    He don’t have feelings for the club anymore …

    It’s best we part it’s not him it’s us … all

  11. Redtruth

    So bottom sides of the Premier league are more capable of beating the top sides than in Germany, Spain and!

    If that truly was the case Arsenal would never finish in the top 4.

  12. Wenker-wanger

    psg must want to be a profit-generating club without winning trophies. Why else would you pay 12 million a year for someone with credentials like his. Please fck off to psg Wenger and give the long suffering arsenal fans a break from your torture. Psg may be a challenge too far for the old man that comfortable in his unthreatened environment. I doubt he would go for 50 million a year.

  13. S Asoa

    From the sound of their apologetic eulogies
    Sound like 2 balls of the prick Wonkie
    Always hanging unto his Imbecile words

  14. Dissenter

    Ramsey is the master of back-passing when in sight of goal.
    How many of his passes are forward passes?

    He’s just a “body” now, there’s nothing special to his game.
    It’s like his repeated muscular injury has number his acceleration or his big-ego has blinded his vision for seeing a good pass.

    He’s one of those players not justifying his mega-pay.

  15. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Wenger is a master …

    At what I’m not sure ….

    Like many please with the win but totally non plussedby the club with him …..

    If we win ok…
    If we lose ok ..

    Emotions are dry with this

    Roll on June

    Let’s announce asap that he is not renewing an thank him for his efforts ….


  16. kc

    First clean sheet in 13 weeks! Literally that’s the only thing exciting about today’s game. Barely scraping by clubs like West Brom at home by one goal doesn’t exactly inspire confidence after losing two in a row. The idiots taking shots at the current mood of the fans are most likely the same type of people that get their kicks off blaming victims. Put the blame where it belongs, on Wenger.

  17. Vince

    Happy for the win though didn’t watch the match. No station showed Arsenal at my end. So I had to watch Jack Wilshere and wasn’t I given a treat. Jack Wilshere has something extraordinary about him. Exactly the type of player you want when playing a packed bus or needing a little of magic. The way he breezes past people is shocking. He did to Chelsea whathe Ozil did to Ludogorets. #Teamjack#apparentheirtocazorlasthrone

  18. Frost


    Anyone see the bust up between Lucas and Gabriel? Care to fill me in?”

    Lucas failed to track back & help defend towards the end. Gab wasn’t having any of it.

  19. Ishola70

    “William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes died one day apart in 1616. So please just shut up about 2016”

    One Arsene Wenger, there’s only one Arsene Wenger!

  20. Elmo

    The 3PM rule is just so lame in 2016.

    With the exception of the 60,000 in the stadium, NOONE can watch the game in the UK other than on some crappy, unreliable, malware-infested international stream. On Boxing Day, when most people have some down time, the Premier League is saying “no you can’t watch the match.” There’s not even a replay available on Sky or BT. The PL says to the fans, your ONLY shot at watching this game is 5 minutes of highlights at 2255 on MOTD. A ridiculous anachronism looking to protect special interests in the age of competitive on-demand media.

    I don’t even follow basketball, but saw what the NBA was offering on Christmas Day: the two best teams in the league playing each other in a humdinger where the lead changed in the final seconds.

  21. Elmo

    Cheers, Ishola70. I’ll take a look.

    I still find it incredible that football can tell the mug punters who pay hundreds a year in sports subscriptions that there’s no legitimate way to watch your team play while people are off work at Christmas.

  22. Samir

    This is our perfect opportunity to nab Mahrez on the cheap …With all their problems, Leicester will need funds to strengthen in Jan.

    Make it happen Arsene!

  23. London gunner


    goals 12
    Assists 6
    Combined 18

    Goals 13
    Assists 5
    Combined 18


    Goals 9
    Assists 1
    Combined 10

    Goals 8
    Assists 2
    Combined 10

    I’m sorry to hazard fan boys he still doesn’t have great end product Sanchez is miles above him and you can’t claim that’s just because hazard drops deep as Sanchez also drops deep and gets involved in play and even is instrumental in creating goal scoring chances… hence his assist rate.

    Oh and

    This is hazards position he plays as a false 9 more often more advanced than costa… so it’s not because he is deep in midfield. It’s just purely because he isn’t as an incisive and doesn’t have the killer end product.

  24. Sid

    Sad to see Ramsey struggling so much despite all the talent he has. Maybe, he will do well under a different manager with a different formation.
    As for Wilshere, I am not sure how long he will stay fit with Arsenal considering the rubbish training methods of Wenger.

  25. Sid


    I hope you have seen the 2012/13 season and how many goals and assists Ramsey registered despite being injured for 3 months. He saved us in the Fa cup final as well. So dont tell me Ramsey has no talent.

  26. Wallace


    “Barely scraping by clubs like West Brom at home by one goal doesn’t exactly inspire confidence after losing two in a row.”

    two weeks ago…

    Chelsea 1 – 0 West Brom (Costa, 76mins)

  27. Wallace


    “So I had to watch Jack Wilshere and wasn’t I given a treat. Jack Wilshere has something extraordinary about him. Exactly the type of player you want when playing a packed bus or needing a little of magic. The way he breezes past people is shocking.”

    yeah, some really nice stuff from Jack yesterday.

  28. Vince

    Thanks, Wallace.
    Black Hei. I see him more as a Cazorla replacement. Someone who takes the ball from the back and starts our attack. And maybe he’s not so injury prone as he got kicked repeatedly but soldiered on. Or maybe he’s just on a lucky streak.

  29. Wallace

    with Wilshere the amount of games he plays this year is almost more important than what he actually does in them. don’t think anyone doubts his talent.

  30. BacaryisGod

    Very surprised Lucas is getting such a free pass. Ozil would have got slaughtered if he had jogged back and left a two-on-one situation for the right back with about 3 minutes to go and us holding on to a 1-0 lead. The fact that he was completely fresh means there should be zero excuses for his laziness. Thank god Gabriel took him apart because I’m not sure Arsene was going to.

  31. Vince

    Black Hei.
    Didn’t look like that to me. He, Arter and the other guy hardly strayed too fat upfield. And I really don’t think he’s an ideal playmaker because his shooting isn’t exactly topnotch. Cazorla’s present role seems the best fit for him.

  32. Wenker-wanger

    January window, we require messi ronaldo, hazard Debryne, Courtois, … That way the team will just go and win matches even with wenger doing his best to screw it up.

  33. Red&White4life

    “Wilshire plays on the tip of a midfield 3 for Bourne?”

    Jacky Vegas Boy works under cover for Bourne ??
    Damned, I knew it!!

  34. Wenker-wanger

    Ramsey is a very good player… No doubt about it. A star in the welsh side that narrowly lost to portugal in the euros. He has no inspiration to really do it for arsenal. He seems a bit laconic… No passion. It isnt good enough and I understand the criticism. But to be a totally different player for wales, surely begs the question why is he so lacklustre here? Wenger?

  35. Red&White4life

    Manure starting to click slowly but surely, chelsea the new invincibles, City to recovers quickly, Liverpool always dangerous, Spuds wanting to finish – at last – above us…

    The end of you’re story is near, Mr Wenger…
    We will celebrate the day you will be gone like if it was a PL trophy, you stupid old incompetent cunt.

  36. Cesc Appeal

    Watching a bit of ArsenalFanTV this morning as a guilty pleasure, I don’t know the guys name, but he’s a regular on there, not one of the massive Wenger Out people, and not one of the loony Wenger arse kissers either, but he has picked up on what I’ve been saying for months and months now, we have to get Ozil out of the middle, particular in tough away games, he also highlighted Tolisso of Lyon, who I also like a lot as a player who has a bit of everything as a CM.

    All this talk of Ozil now playing as a second ST or whatever does not matter, all that means is the pretence of him doing any CM work at all is now gone and we’re left with actually just two CM’s and is this current set up, none of our players are good enough as a midfield duo.

    Wenger usually stumbles upon solutions when injuries bite and we start to worry about 4th, so fingers crossed before the end of the season we can find some way to make a 4-3-3 with an extra man in the centre work.

    Of course next year there could be an entirely new system.

  37. Cesc Appeal

    Red and White

    I’m sort of riding the delusion train, the thought of reentering this loop of disappointment for the foreseeable future is too much.

    We’ve got some good players, just have to hold out that a new manager can come in and get more out of them, one who actually has a vision of a system they want and adds the missing pieces.

    I still say we f****d up this summer, both Kante and Mkhitaryan available, £30 Million each which is such good value in this market it is almost theft. Still think Kante is massively underrated, proving what a pivotal player he is.

  38. Red&White4life

    Le specialist in transfert windows (among so many other things) is only interested by top players who aren’t availables.

    So he can keep on complaining he didn’t bought them because there wasn’t top players on the market.