Reworking of the international break?

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I am BACK.

Having spent the weekend seeing Matt from the AO getting married, I am as fresh as a stale teabag that’s been sitting in a milky cup for 2 days.

However, I am here, at your service.

International break might be landing a spring clean, FIFA is considering having less but longer breaks. Damn right, that’s the dream right there. 2 International breaks by October is outrageous. Arsenal has already paid the price. We’ve lost Mustafi to a thigh injury, and we’re likely to have lost Koscielny. Our solid defence has taken a standard hammering.

I speak for myself and pretty much every person I know in saying that no one cares for the qualifiers. International football is bland on toast. The games are boring, Wembley can’t sell them out, and it gets right in the way of my blogging flow. Can someone please think about my blogging flow for once?

When you see empty seats at all these ground, it does make you wonder how long football can keep piling more and more onto the fans? Are we starting to see peak football? Will grounds continue to sell out? Here’s a great piece about why clubs lying about capacity is a thing. TL:DR, clubs in America have been lying for years to prop up sponsorship deals and government grants. We’ve seen it at Arsenal for years. Would be fascinating to know what the Premier League attendances really look like.

So yeah, back to injured players. Per Mertesacker could be recalled to the back three, perhaps with Rob Holding if Laurent is injured. NOT GREAT. Callum Chambers is also injured which is kind of a pointless piece of news.

Anyway, you can almost taste the Premier League returning. Taking on Watford should be standard, but their new Marcos Silva has them flying in 8th, just one point behind Arsenal. So it’s not going to be an easy game for us. I really detest the first game back from international break. Everyone is a little tired, the team is often out of sorts, and it’s rarely an easy afternoon.

Pray that the rest of the team comes back unscathed and we can continue our good form until the inevitable unravelling happens against City in a few weeks.

Right, have a good day. SPEAK TOMORROW x

120 Responses to “Reworking of the international break?”

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  1. SuperSwede

    I would love if Wenger opted to play a line up from the one’s not been away on international duty. Two weeks to prepare a team to beat Watford and then Red Star. The internationals get a week to prepare for Everton.

    Watford: Cech – Chambers, Per, Holding – Debuchy, AMN, Jack , Nelson – Theo, Welbeck, Özil

    Red Star: Ospina – Chambers, Per, Holding – Debuchy, Elneny, Jack, AMN – Theo, Giroud, Welbeck

    Everton: Cech – Kos,(?), Per, Monreal – Bellerin, Xhaka, Ramsey, Kolasinac – Iwobi, Laca, Sanchez

  2. Frankie Coffeecakes

    Interesting comment Pedro, on being footballed out. Can’t really explain it, but oddly I am growing more and more disinterested in football these days. Perhaps having to endure the nonsense that permeates Arsenal is doing it? Either way, your comment rings with some truth to me.

  3. Do One Gambon

    Frankie that ones easy, I’ve been going through the same. I’m still in love with the game but not at the highest level as much as I used to be

    1. Arsenal themselves and the complete lack of ambition.

    2. The ridiculous money ever skewing the game away from anything resembling fair. First the best oligarchs and now whole fucking nation states own clubs, and not for sporting reasons.

    3. The TV companies fucking around with the fans by moving games at short notice

    4. The 24/7 news and rumour mill is just over saturation. Its like all the drama surrounding the sport is more important than… You know…. The actual matches.

    5. The increase in gamesmanship over the last decade. I know divings always been a thing but I think its gotten far worse due to the increased financial implications for winning.

    6. And I got no proof, just a feeling of outright corruption spread within the game.

    These are the reasons I’m not as emotionally invested as I used to be.
    Used to watch most games on TV, now outside of a arsenal who I still watch, unless I’m in a pub its more of a passing glance.

  4. graham62

    Oh for the football of the 1970’s and 80’s. Rickety old stadiums, crap pitches, proper atmospheres, relate to the players, passion, committment, roasted peanuts etc.

    It seemed to mean so much more back then.

  5. ArseneisaFraud

    I totally agree with the fact that greed is totally ruining the game. And when you now see that some players are being valued in the £70-100 million bracket, I can’t help but think that football is becoming more and more absurd.

  6. SUGA3

    The thing is that this upward ‘progress’ trajectory is simply unsustainable and seems like another bubble that is about to burst. There is just one more thing to prolong this madness, providing that the global economy holds: online streaming rights. But that will be the pinnacle of it.

    Up to a point, the rise in player valuations and wages was more or less offset by greater gate receipts, European income and more or less proportionate TV rights money. Now the media rights sales have turned everything on its head, as all the clubs have money.

  7. Dissenter

    The Irish bastards are at it. I knew RoI would beat the Welsh.
    C’mom you bearded bastard Irish warriors 😉

  8. Goobergooner

    It was always going to happen with proper globalisation of the sport, money taking over.
    It’s just nowadays the paying fans are the ones treated with contempt. It really is getting disgraceful at the top levels.

    What I’d have loved to have watched is some of the old school teams with the modern day training regimes. With their heart and pure desire to play at the best level it would have been great to see.

  9. Goobergooner

    Also good morning from Gold Coast, Australia. Hope you Grovers, whatever time it is where you are, are safe and happy!

    Kroenke and Arsene out!!
    Oh and gazidis the useless prick

  10. DM


    Nice! But as for the record… not quite, mate. 20+ used to be a regular occurrence… when you beat my 71, then I’ll be impressed 😉

  11. graham62

    The onus was on Ramsey last night and he failed. With no Bale, the pressure was on him to deliver a performance worthy of his position as a top flight midfielder.

    Should anyone be surprised? Of course not. Here is a player who has never really hit the heights predicted and who, despite recovering from a horrific injury, often flatters to deceive.

    Another wasted product of the ‘Wenger circus’ who, when push comes to shove, lacks the relevant tactical skills to perform at the heighest level.

  12. graham62

    Running into blind alleys far too often seems to be a major part of AR’s makeup. Leggy/one paced, he never seems to have the time and relevant skills, to pick out the right option.

    Then again, what do I know?

  13. Goobergooner

    It just seems strange how Ramsey is still preferred in our midfield when fit. And I didn’t catch the Wales game, but from watching previous matches, you can tell the way the Welsh utilise him is more to his benefit. Arsene just doesn’t discipline him at all. If we do have him in midfield it has to be as a number 10, but I wouldn’t prefer him to anyone really, not fussed between him and Ozil haha.

  14. Bamford10

    Nothing is more pointless and annoying than people complaining about the light-hearted competition to be first poster. It’s a bit of fun and it’s been going on forever. Relax already. Jesus.

  15. Bamford10


    Ramsey is “preferred” because our midfield options are really limited. Go ahead and select a Ramsey-less Arsenal midfield: it will suck just as badly as one with Ramsey in it.

  16. Bamford10


    Ramsey could have been a good player but he has never received proper instruction. His decision-making is garbage, but this is because Wenger believes in instruction-free football / training sessions. “The game itself,” he says, “is the greatest teacher.” Aside from a few geniuses who have come through the ranks, the result of this approach is scores of players who don’t know what the fuck they’re doing in the attacking third and who make loads of terrible decisions.

  17. Dissenter

    Unbelievable news from the Icelandic World Cup qualifying group.
    They beat Croatia, Turkey and Ukraine to qualify first in the group.

    Next….draw them with England.
    Waiting for that thunder clap in the WC.

  18. Dissenter

    Ramsey’s problem isn’t Wenger
    His inflated sense of self-esteem is the problem. The lad believes he is an Iniesta + Viera incarnation. He plays for only himself.
    I expect him to leave for the biggest club that comes calling. He’s certain he’s too big for Arsenal.

  19. Bamford10


    Why does he believe that? Because his manager has never corrected him and put him in his place. Ramsey is a product of Wenger and Arsenal. He could have been a very different player.

  20. shaun ellis

    just read a couple of words and saw disinterested in football and that is all I needed to see, I think it really is a growing feeling with everyone, the international football is the most boring ever and the arsenal product is just plain simple shit run by a bunch of piss taking mofo’s

  21. Goobergooner

    Haha yeah Bamford, I somehow overlooked the massive hole in quality in that department. Ahhh man. From the invincibles to this.

  22. loyika


    How the hell does Rambo not doing his stuff for Wales in one game have anything to do with Arsene and his role at Arsenal?

    In that same sense we can say Iwobi doing well for Nigeria is due to Arsene and Arsenal?

    fcuk me!! Why stop there, why not just go further and blame Poch for the lackluster game play of his Spurs players at the last Euros.

    Un’fcuking”believable some of the things we spew on a footie blog.

    So when Ronaldo (the fake one) plays for Portugal, whose tutelage do we praise or blame then (as he has had like several managers in his life time) depending on how he performs during games? Messi for Argentina? BOLLOCKS!!

  23. Goobergooner

    Haha Bamford, “Ramsey is a product of Wenger” . I mean that is blatantly obvious, but it’s that deeper meaning of his growth under Wenger into an average at best midfielder that makes me laugh

  24. Emiratesstroller


    I agree that there is now too much football being offered and that is almost certainly impacting on attendances at matches particularly if they are also offered on television, which is obviously much cheaper than going to a match.

    International Football may be a money making exercise for FIFA and the constituent federations, but it does very little for the sport in general and is frankly an unnecessary diversion particularly when clubs lose players who
    are required to make long journeys and different time zones.

    Moreover it is often costly when the clubs lose players with long term injuries
    as may well be the case now with Mustafi. Arsenal are now short potentially of
    three Centre Backs.

    Moving on to Arsenal it is beginning to look like the club are in the process of
    regime change albeit under Wenger’s watch.

    Since the summer the club has appointed Per Mertesacker as Academy Manager, Jens Lehmann as a first team coach and now apparently Marc Overmars
    as Football Director.

    All three have a lot in common. First they are current or ex Arsenal players. Second they have played in successful club and international teams and third
    they are probably players who have got on well with Wenger.

    It is clear that there is regime change coming at the club within the next 12 months and they are gradually putting together a management/coaching team who will takeover when Wenger retires as Manager almost certainly in June 2019.

    There are probably other ex Arsenal players who might be recruited over the
    next two years. I would have thought that the arrival of Overmars might also
    encourage Dennis Bergkamp to return to London in a coaching capacity.

    The million dollar question is of course who is likely to take over as Manager?
    Could it be someone like Patrick Vieira who played alongside many of these
    players and has now got considerable management and coaching experience?

    The fact that so many ex Arsenal players are being brought back is very much
    in the tradition of Arsenal. Since the Herbert Chapman era there have been mostly Managers appointed who were either ex staff or players at the club.
    Wenger is in fact one of just three managers who did not come from that tradition.

    I am beginning to wonder whether the lack of contract negotiations and completions is a precursor to Arsenal rebuilding our squad/team without some of
    the baggage that has been accumulated in recent years.

    Sanchez and Ozil may be gifted but are they team players setting a good example and showing passion and commitment to the club? This may explain why
    Arsenal are not exactly making a big effort to keep them beyond next summer.

  25. loyika

    @ Emstroller

    I would have said Paddy V would definitely come back as Manager but i have a feeling a lot of water has gone under the bridge between him and Arsene.

    Big Tone would have also had a role if he was smart and just knew how to play the politics of the football club. Maybe Henry will also consider coming back when he is sure Arsene has stepped down.

    What is obvious though is that Arsene will definitely pick his successor and depending on how that goes, Ivan G will pick/select the next person. Only problem we would have will all these changes is if Stan K decides to appoint Arsene as the DoF (very ironic that would be considering Arsene’s view on this)

  26. Emiratesstroller


    I don’t think that a Patrick Vieira return would be a problem for Wenger. First
    of all Vieira has not publicly criticised him. The only upset was that Wenger did not bring him onto coaching staff.

    Adams is an entirely different story, because he has been openly critical of Wenger just like Merson and Ian Wright.However, none of these players fall
    within the brain box of the year category.

    What should also be considered is that Wenger has in recent times resumed good relations with some of his bitterest former managerial rivals most notably Ferguson.

    Frankly I think that the only significant Manager that Wenger detests and vice versa is Mourinho. Otherwise he maintains civil if not cordial relations
    with most other managers and ex players.

    There is clearly a trend to bring back ex Arsenal players onto the staff and I think that is a good thing. Arsenal may have been short of a natural leader in
    their recent teams, but are not short of intelligent and articulate players.

  27. loyika

    @ Stroller

    Agree with everything said.

    As for Arsene’s hatred or likeness for Managers, i believe Koeman is slowly rising up the ranks (might even surpass Jose) of Managers Arsene clearly hates. (Lol)

    All jokes aside i do truly hope this contract is his last and he leaves, as in truly leaves the club (at least for quite sometime) for us to settle down and try to get some new form of identity as a club. But yeah, could see the club renewing its relationship with the fan base if a lot of “Old Boys” were around the place, just not sure how an “Oldie” being made Manager would translate to how we fare on the pitch?

    But hey, would be happy if it was Paddy V or DB10 (I Think his fear of flying rules him out though) just a new (old) face at the touchline would go down a treat with the whole fanbase.

    Might even begin to start missing the Old Fossil and his (Im)famous Zipper Jacket once he is finally gone. (but be gone he must at the end of this contract, of that there is no question)

  28. HighburyLegend

    “but be gone he must at the end of this contract, of that there is no question”

    lol he will leave when the board – and that means wenger himself – will decide to, period. Still amazed to see such naive fans…

  29. David Smith

    James Olley saying the club are adamant there has been no agreement with Overmars
    Could mean a lot of things, JO may be wrong, the club may be telling porkies, Ivan may have put it out there, only for Wnger to go squealing to Stan to stop it in his tracks.
    Even if it is true, i fear next summer, when we need serious rebuilding , and signing of contracts, Wenger alone will be working on all this, using the shorter transfer window, and his World Cup commentating commitments to ensure he does the bare minimum

  30. loyika

    @ HighburyLegend

    Frankly if i had a choice of being “Naive” or you, Being Naive would win all day.

    Besides that mate, hope you’re good though.

  31. graham62

    PV would make an ideal replacement. He would also have the respect of the players and the backing of the fans.

    However, Vieira will not return if, god forbid, Wenger goes upstairs.

  32. Dissenter

    There something fundamentally wrong with the England set-up when they start inviting average players like Spuds Harry Winks to the set-up.
    The England manager is really confused.

  33. Dissenter

    What’s the world cup qualifier of the day?
    I suggest all the COMNEBOL games, only one team has qualified as at today.
    Chile have to get a result against Brazil [ who have already qualified]
    Argentina have to beat Equador [already out] at 9,300 feet above sea level. Argentina are probably not going to qualify.

  34. Redtruth

    For Emiratesstroller it’s all about preserving his season ticket
    His aimless posts fail to address the need for immediate swift action.
    Goofing around when he could be organising rallies cements Wenger’s grip on the club.

  35. Park Chu-young's left testicle

    Overmars will not be DoF at Arsenal.

    So that leaves Per Mertesacker as Academy Manager, and Jens Lehmann as a first team coach. A big whoopdeedoo! Completely uninspiring. I think we are clutching at straws for any light at the end of the tunnel.

    Nothing will change while Wenger, Kroenke and Gazidis are lining their pockets.

  36. Emiratesstroller


    Unlike you I am not a CORBYNISTA who protests against everything that moves,
    but delivers absolutely nothing.

    You are an “empty barrel” whose sole contribution to Le Grove is negativity and
    telling everyone else what to do.

  37. Micheal

    Well said, ES. He is only looking for a reaction and needs to say increasingly stupid things to provoke responses. Child-like.

    The best policy is to to ignore him and not to respond.

  38. Redtruth

    60.000 Redtruth season ticket holders would boycott the Emirates.

    60.000 Emiratesstroller season ticket holders would fill the Emirates.

    Which supporter holds the clubs best interests to heart….Emiratesstroller or Redtruth.

  39. HighburyLegend

    “Nothing will change while Wenger, Kroenke and Gazidis are lining their pockets.”

    Yep. The worst version of the 3 stooges.

  40. graham62


    It’s a no brainer.

    The turnover of fan’s has been far greater since leaving Highbury, than the 60000 that currently attend the Emirates(actually this is a myth, probably only around 35000 plus tourist groups and hospitality scroungers and of course, minus the away fans).

    RT, you may be too aggresive with your communications on occasions, nevertheless, you sometimes make good sense.

  41. graham62

    Last time I went to the Emirates was November 2012(Montpeiller ECL). Sat between a Danish family, who had absoulutely no idea who was playing for Arsenal and a couple of miserable geezers, who took great joy in informing me that they would never vacate their season tickets, even though they had no trust in Wenger.


  42. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    If there was 60,000 red truth in the country
    We would be fucked .


    Why get off coating other people ?

    I understand digs at the club but at other posters ?

    Rub it off .

  43. graham62

    Ok, agreed, RT can be a bit ott, but come on folks, we’re all adults here. If you get offended by someone who is passionate for change, then why come on this site in the first place.

    Foul and abusive language is not being used, just over zealous input on a subject close to the heart.

    Grow some balls, this is not Jackanory!

  44. Emiratesstroller

    GRAHAM 62

    RT does not have an ounce of passion for Arsenal. This moron has only two objectives.

    The first is to pretend how clever he is and how stupid everyone else is.

    The second is to write constantly negatives and put me downs of others.

    As I wrote previously he is “an empty barrel making the most noise” but
    contributing absolutely nothing productive.

    You can go back two or three years and his posts are repetitive like a worn out record.

    Most people start out believing that he is a WUM and even a small number that he is slightly funny, but the fact is that most regular readers/posters of
    Le Grove get fed up and Pedro has at least on three separate occasions felt
    compelled to ban him.

  45. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Agree to a point a lot of what he says creases me up,

    But when he gets a target an then repeatedly pops at them it gets boring for the reader an upsetting to the victim.

    By all means let him be himself but lay of targets .

  46. HillWood

    Redtruth has a deep knowledge of Arsenal going back decades
    And he can remember scores and goal scorers from the distant past.
    He just gets a bit grumpy sometimes

  47. graham62


    “contributing absolutely nothing productive”. Come on, many of his posts are simple, direct and to the point. Sometimes, they are even rather amusing.

    Ok, he may say things that some people don’t want to hear, but, for the most part, he only directs his negatives towards those that remain blind to the core problems.

    His intentions and motives are based purely on anger and frustration, so I wouldn’t take it too personally. You know what you’re going to get, so why not counter with equal gusto rather than moan and groan that he’s spoiling the game.


  48. graham62

    Oh yeh, and what the #### does BOOMSLANG(and a few others) do each time there’s a new post?

    Now that’s really constructive and, anyway, who gives a CASTLEMAINE XXXX?

    Must be finding time too much time between lessons.

  49. Mark

    I don’t think the lack of contract negotiations are a sign the club, (Wenger) are not making a big effort to keep Sanchez / Ozil. The offers were made, they were just not accepted !
    I think even Arsene has accepted. ( Privately since Ox refused that massive offer), that Sanchez/Ozil are going no matter what.

  50. Goobergooner

    By crikey we need him or Kos fit. Preferably both. Hopefully they recover quickly! I’m not looking forward to playing with them out. I’d like to say it’s only Watford, but we all know how shoddy our defence is at the best of times, and with this midfield. Ohhh man.
    So over the lull

  51. TonyD

    According to the Mail Sport City are supposedly going to offer £20million for Sanches in the January window.

    Better than nothing, so we should take it and replace him with a player who wants to play for us.

  52. Pierre

    Graham62 , talking about redtruth.
    “. Come on, many of his posts are simple, direct and to the point. ”

    I think if you had left out “direct and to the point “, you would have a more apt description of Ruth’s contribution on here.

  53. Cesc Appeal

    I cannot see us selling Sanchez in January, I know Wenger is immune to any form of criticism or accountability, but even he must end up seriously under pressure after refusing £50-60 Million offers in the summer and potential clever deals with people like PSG to then sell Sanchez at £20 Million in January and no doubt plead poverty against the inflated January prices and avoid buying.

    So far, Sanchez played well against Brighton at home (but it was Brighton at home) and the gamble to keep him and turn our noses up at massive money looks dumb, was always going to be.

    Selling him at £20 Million after that would be another Nero moment for Wenger, just doing whatever the f**k he wants as demonstrating he is untouchable.

  54. HighburyLegend

    “Better than nothing, so we should take it and replace him with a player who wants to play for us.”

    I didn’t know that there still was great strikers who were attracted by our club.

  55. Wallace

    think there’s far more likelihood of selling Ozil than Alexis in January. makes no sense selling Alexis now after bungling the City/Lemar thing in the summer. we’ve done okay without him, but he’s still our best player. whereas we could probably get on okay without Ozil.

  56. Wallace

    if Theo can keep padding his stats in the Europa & Caribou we could prob get 30m + for him in Jan. 70m ish for him and the Ox would some way to easing the blow of losing our two best players for zip.

  57. WengerEagle

    The World Cup will be a duller place with Chile’s absence, sad for Sanchez and Vidal who are two top class in their prime players who deserve to be there, let down by their team mates.

  58. WengerEagle

    And class personified last night in the form of Messi, really came up big when his country needed him.

    Hat-rick away to Ecuador is quite some feat especially with the quality of each goal. Would like to see him complete footy next year and win the World Cup but cannot look past the big 3 of Brazil, France and Germany who are all much better organised and in midfield where Argentina are very weak.

    Sampaoli has 8 months to unearth a proper CM from somewhere.

  59. Gooner63

    Oh dear Chile

    I guess thats scuppered some AKBs beliefs that Alexis would play well for us so he would get a World cup spot.

    I guess he just needs to get his fingers flexed ready to sign a deal with City in Jan.

    And Jack told he has 6 months to be fit and play well or piss off – he must feel so loved lol

    Really hoping Jan goes like this

    Jack signs for – well anyone in the Prem
    Alexis signs for City
    Ozil signs for Utd

    Even tho it was just in the gossip section,i did love

    “Wenger wants Martial as the new Alexis” – wenger back to his best lol

    I reckon we should go for Southgate as next manager – he seems to have the no organised CM/Defence combo down to a tee – would slot straight in

  60. HighburyLegend

    Well, I didn’t know that the US team had lost against Trinité & Tobago, so even if there was this “ghost goal” from Panama, I guess they can only blame themselves…

  61. Cesc Appeal

    No way we can shift Ozil on in January, no one wants him and his wage demands seem to be putting a lot of people off.

    I cannot see a top team in Europe who would want him, does not really have a place in modern football where midfield players are required to do so much, be multi-role and put in the effort, very few teams seem to have the lazy, one dimensional No.10 now.

    I think Ozil’s next move will show how far his stock has fallen.

  62. Uwot?

    Yeah let’s hope that c**t Maureen wants him lol- only reason for that would be to piss off wenger & Arsenal who he hates & still has chip on his shoulder from chav days.still would be glD for that to backfire on him & alsl offload the waste of space…

  63. Cesc Appeal

    That would weaken United massively, though they can afford a luxury like Ozil. But Matic, Pogba and Ozil and a midfield is no good in the tough games, he would have to be benched.

    I suppose they might go for him if he is free, but I cannot see United signing off on £300 000 a week for him when he is a total luxury buy.

    Mourinho might approach it Madrid style, bring him off early even in easy home games, but he would have to leave him out in the tough games home and away.

    Would be a waste of resources from them, though they have form recently. United were looking at Lemar as well, far better off going for him.

  64. Pierre

    Here are a few bits of bullshit being reported in the last half hour










  65. Pierre


    Cesc Appeal thinks Özil would be a luxury for man Utd and would have to be benched for tough home and away games.
    Cesc originally said that no one wants him in January as he doesn’t play modern football (whatever that is)…
    It looks like Cesc has an ally in uwot as he believes arsenal should” offload the waste of space “