*Hey Siri* find me my finest ‘Mind the gap banter’

by .

via @arsenal

Unai Emery takes charge of Arsenal vs Newcastle this evening in a tense as you like battle that could see Arsenal LEAPFROG United AND Spurs. Imagine the banter lads and laddetes… Arsenal, going above Spurs. A team they said could no longer be deemed Spursy. Title challengers a mere two months ago. The GREATEST crop of players to ever have graced Shit Hart Lane… and we could go above them in a transition season.

A thought so appetizing, even Harry Kane couldn’t resist licking it. Watching Poch and his boys botch a point yesterday gave me so much joy. Imagine moving into your new toilet bowl under the ad headline of ‘THE NEWEST STADIUM IN THE EUROPA LEAGUE’… I am physically aroused at the thought.

There are some watch-outs this evening. Rafa B is a wily old fox. He’s always been a smart tactician and he’s literally rotting away at a Newcastle. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t have some secret weapons up his sleeve. Miguel Almirón might not have scored any goals, but be honest, when has a goal drought ever been a problem for a player coming to us? We are a gift for bad records. The guy was MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCERBALL hype over in the states where the speedy wide man would electrify 70,000 fans in Atlanta. He could be a nightmare for a defence that is extremely susceptible to the long ball over the top on the fast counter-attack.

The only other worry we have is that Arsenal have had a whole bunch of players out on international duty, whilst Newcastle will have had 2 weeks to plan and practice a strategem to stifle us.

The game being at home helps, but I truly hope we don’t come back lethargic. We need to fly out the traps like we have done in the last few games. As Mike Tyson once said, ‘everyone has a strategy until they get a smack in the mouth’… the football equivalent of that is an early goal.

Emery, who came to his senses this year when he decided to bring Ramsey and Ozil in from the cold has doubled down on what good players can do for your systems.

“I think we are taking a good performance using a different system and different players,”

“For example, we started the last two matches playing 3-4-1-2.

“But we finished it playing 3-4-3, with players helping us in the 90th minute with a different system and different positions.”

“At first I used information from last year or the last two years. Mesut can play like a No 10 player, or starting on the right or left, in a different system, and he has a good mentality.

“And also Aaron Ramsey can play in a system with two or three midfielders, getting more in the opposition box.

“I used this information with this player and I think this player’s mind is very open to help us, to play in different positions and give us a big performance. He has a very good attitude to do that.”

Amen Unai… the big worry for the summer is how we replace Aaron. It’s not just a talented player we’re losing, it’s someone who understands a North London Derby, a player who knows what the shirt is all about. But fuck it, that’s a worry for another day.

We need a big performance this evening. Newcastle are an easy switch off side, they’re not sexy, they have a poor reputation and complacency could be a problem.

… but the players MUST be tasting Champions League bonus money by now. So let’s hope Emery and his coaches have them firing on greed cylinders.

BIG MATCH, see you in the comments. x

302 Responses to “*Hey Siri* find me my finest ‘Mind the gap banter’”

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  1. Samesong

    Iwobi problem is that he tries actually to hard. needs to relax in situations, the work ethic is there.

    Ozil been good tonight.

  2. Dissenter

    Like I said, Ramsey’s temp has been very high
    He nes to be taken off to preserve him.

    Let’s see what Suarez has in his kitty.

  3. Dissenter

    Paulinho
    It’s hard to say that he’s injured
    It could just be that he felt a strain and went down as instructed by the manager. They know he’s not 100%

  4. LeMassiveCoq

    Officials are shit. Its almost like they are trying to prove a point against the big team after the shocking decisions that gifted the Chavs a win against Cardiff.

    On Iwobi, I thought he actually looked pretty decent tonight…

    Somebody above said Ozil has had a good game…He was shocking in the first, at least he kind of woke up after half time.

    We sure are gonna miss Ramsey (I admit to calling him Ramshit for about 2 years), but he was. Ramshit, that is is. TBH I forgave him when he scored that dinked goal against Spurs.

    Atos in the stadium sounds pretty shit…even for MNF…

  5. LeMassiveCoq

    I like Guendozi, buuut, he needs to learn how to tackle better in 50, 50s. He rarely wins the ball

  6. Paulinho

    Guendouzi is a decent talent but he goes forward and has no idea what to do once he gets there. He then usually moves out wide in a panic to give it to the full back.

  7. Kay

    I am totally impressed with the way we have played today.

    Good football – check
    Clean sheet – check
    Newcastle barely had a sniff – check
    3 points – check

  8. LeMassiveCoq

    Paulinho.

    Very true. He’s very good at breaking up the opposition play but his decision making when hes driving forward with the ball is poor. Makes Ramsey look like Zidane..

  9. Marko

    I would have given MOTM to Ramsey too. Clean sheet and Sokratis avoids a yellow and potential ban…will do nicely.

  10. TheLegendaryDB10

    Paulinho

    We can really see how green Guen is. It is so frustrating when he gets dispossessed or when he does that really crap pass he shouldn’t be doing. I genuinely hope he irons this out of his game.

    Kay

    Newcastle were shit – check.

    Don’t get me wrong. Really glad for the win.

    To the one spud reading this blog: peanuts&monkeys

    Mind the Gap!!!!

  11. Leftsidesanch

    Thomas/Steve is really a weirdo. Unless your under 15 this consistent trolling is pathetic.

    Doesn’t it get boring? We get your not an Arsenal fan, change it up. Your not even coming with anything witty or original.

  12. MidwestGun

    MidwestGun
    March 31, 2019 18:24:59
    Graham-
    2-0 to the Arsenal. Also, the betting favorite but it makes sense to me given that Mustafi is back on the bench and we are at home. If they score my nerves will be terrible.
    _______________
    Boom..!!! Get in… $40 got me $350 and we are in 3rd.. Nostradamus got nothing on me.

    Mind the Gap!!!! biaaaaatches…

  13. Kermitkong

    Brilliant result tonight and amazing how we have kept a few clean sheets recently.

    We have 5 away games and 2 home games left from our remaining fixtures including wolves away, Everton, Leicester. They’re all banana skins imo but I think we’ll need to win 2 of them to finish top 4

  14. ddkingz

    was that a cleansheet to arsenal…. damn, just like old times, getting the business done by the end of the season… emery just have to find a way to break our away sickness..

    best defender of the match…. sokratis, a fu king gladiator.

    best midfielder of the match…. MG, so much sauce for a kid that age, sell the rest of the lot a just keep him, he never takes the ball back, or States playing dilly-dally.

    best attacker if the match…. well well well, I’ll leave this for the house to pass the final judgement.

  15. Pierre

    Lemassivecoq
    “On Iwobi, I thought he actually looked pretty decent tonight…Somebody above said Ozil has had a good game…He was shocking in the first”

    Your definitely living up to your name tonight.

  16. London gunner

    I think people need to give guen a bit more credit.

    He is 19 playing cm. CM dont usually peak to mid even late 2os.

    The main thing going in his favour is that he is class and shows some sublime moments of quality. He is great on the ball, great engine/athlete and has that ability to not just spray exquisite balls but pass between the lines to progress levels of play.

    His lack of awarness and sometimes poor passing can be ironed out of a 19 years old game. Give the lad a chance ffs ya miserable bastards.

  17. Jay

    Well well well, you can see the true arsenal supporters.
    One overjoyed at the win and sitting 3rd above spurs, the other picking fights and bitching.

  18. LeMassiveCoq

    London…

    I’m a massive fan of MG. Totally agree he is a real talent at 19. Doesnt mean you cant point out his weaknesses.

    Pierre,

    I’ve been quick to get at Iwobi before, but IMO he dd well tonight. Ozil was involved a lot in the first half but he was pretty ineffective. His unwillingness to track back and give a fuck was also pretty apparent.

  19. Jay

    Well done emery. I didn’t think we had a hope in hell beginning of the season.
    Actually excited for the run in.
    Oh and spurs… Hahaha!

  20. DaniAltos

    Laughable really that benitez was touted here by some people who don’t like emery because he is ‘defensively organized’….

  21. Sanmi

    Folks saying our away form is bad should look at the reason we lost those away games.
    We had 4 defenders injured in those period.
    Plus, with us 2 points ahead of the pack and they still having to play each other, we can basically afford to fuck up 2 games and still be 4th

  22. London gunner

    Is it just me or are we starting to see a bit of emery ball aka a bit more style about the way we play?

    The wingback play combined with quick flick inter change passes. Not saying qe are playing brilliant football but you can see the development of patterns and chemistry among the players.

  23. London gunner

    Pierre

    I actually don’t have any issues with ozil when he os assiting and creating goals. I was never one calling for him to track back or make tackles but what on earth has happened to his creativity?

    I wouldn’t blame emery either as Ramsey and others even mikhi when he is played have had more offensive impact thqn ozil.

  24. Sanmi

    London gunner,
    We actually play the 3rd best football in epl. Pool are just slightly better. We are miles off Chelsea and man utd

  25. Pierre

    For me , that was a quality performance by The Arsenal , we looked in total control of the game from start to finish , Ramsey was excellent tonight .

    What I would like to see is Emery trust the players for the upcoming away games and not meddle with the formation too much …..it’s working, why change it.

    Having control of the game and playing with composure and keeping possession of the football is doing wonders for our defence.

    It has always been my belief that the reason we were struggling at the back is because we were loose in possession of the football .

    What we have now is a football team playing with patience and intelligence and now the whole team look much more comfortable with what the manager is asking of them.

    Let’s hope we can sustain this form away from home .

  26. Sanmi

    I think y’all should rewatch this match and pay attention to how ozil played. He actually played very well.
    I’m annoyed with AMN until Aubameyang came on, then he started playing.
    Mustafi was a mistake waiting to happen.
    Xhaka makes us control the midfield more than Guendouzi.
    Ramsey isolated Guendouzi

  27. TheLegendaryDB10

    Kay

    Alright. I am being a bit harsh. But there were times were we would indeed play well to then lose the ball, to then get it back (great!) but then we would either do a really crap pass/through ball or get dispossessed.

    But we also did have our good, well built, offensive moments.

    I am really glad that we held our nerve, won the game and made sure to have us sit in 3rd position.

  28. Sanmi

    Pierre
    That formation will not work away when teams will try to attack.
    Ozil must be substituted for mkhi.
    And auba and lacazette shouldn’t start.
    It was the mistake we made away to westham

  29. Sanmi

    Man utd still has man city (L), chelsea (D). That means we can afford to fuck 3 games up and still be ahead

  30. Danny

    One of the positives about the match was that we got the ball in their net 4 times which is a good thing for our 5 away matches because on another day Socratis wont do a stupid foul and the ref wont be an arsehole, I see no difference between Newcastle, Everton, Wolves, Watford, Leicester etc

  31. Kay

    TheLegendaryDB10

    This is exactly a type of game we usually cock it up. I was impressed by the way we controlled the game and kept the pressure up till the end. Newcastle just couldn’t keep up.

    Hope we maintain this till the end. 3rd is ours to lose now.

  32. BacaryisGod

    Yet again, Monreal flies under the radar. Another solid as a rock performance. His decision-making has become impeccable. I really thought he would be a Mustafi-like bust in his first season but he’s become a superb leader on the team for several years.

  33. LeMassiveCoq

    Danny…the difference is, they are all away..

    I can see us beating Everton.

    Wolves will counter attack us like they do to all the big teams. They’ve done well against the big teams this season. Watford won’t be easy, but I’d be suprised if we dont win that. Leicester are improving under Brenda and Burnley might be scrapping against relegation…so hold onto your pants for top 4…

  34. TheLegendaryDB10

    Kay

    Hope we maintain this till the end. 3rd is ours to lose now

    Agreed. I’d rather be in this position to be fighting from 6tb at the tail end of the season.

    We need to remain focused. It looks like Unai is taking this more and more seriously.

    If we maintain this course in the PL, it could help free our shackles of how we then play in the EL. Could make things very interesting.

  35. Nelson

    The coach should show video to AMN how Bellerin played that position. When we have the ball, AMN was standing too far away like a right winger. No wonder we hardly saw him on the field. The poor Mustafi had to pass the ball back to the middle and made a few errors. When Auba came in, AMN moved back to our half and started to get involve.

  36. Guns of sf

    One word for matty

    Raw

    The dude was everywhere and tried to push us into the attacking third unlike ozil who was a yawn fest most of the game

    Laca played well. If he’s not scoring he is creating

    Mikki was much better than ozil

    The offense was firing and he got into the box all the time

  37. NW9 gooner

    Ozil had a great game after a long time, Izil bashers are blindsided by their dislike. He is probably on the wane but hope he continues in this form to help into top four and win the EL. Given a choice I would prefer EL as the result is the same and we would win a European trophy after ages

  38. Emiratesstroller

    This was a good result tonight despite some negativity by certain posters on
    Le Grove.

    What is clear now is that Emery needs to find some away form to replicate what we are achieving at home. None of the away matches is going to be easy.

    My personal view is that Arsenal need to play away from home in similar fashion and set up to the way we play at Emirates. Everyone can see that Arsenal continue to look fragile when we play on the back foot. Our defence
    remains problematic.

    Frankly Arsenal have the armour to play offensively with two strikers up front
    and with both Ozil and Ramsey playing well in midfield as both did today.

    What we need to resolve is that we play the right person in the holding midfield position. The debate is whether we play Xhaka, Torreira [once his
    suspension is complete] or Guendouzi in that position. At the moment I would
    be inclined to play Xhaka there provided that he is fit.

    As I wrote earlier today we should now be aiming for third place in EPL, but
    our away form is going to need to improve. We need in my view 75 points to
    finish 4th and probably 78-80 points to finish higher.

  39. NW9 gooner

    Guns of sf- mikki was better than Ozil in 10 mins? You are making a joke? He probably touched the ball 10 times and lost it three times. He is good player but stick to realism please.

  40. Emiratesstroller

    Gun of sf

    You are really talking tripe if you are suggesting that Mkhitaryan played better than Ozil in this game.

    What exactly did he do? He hardly touched the ball in the short time he was on the pitch.

    Ozil had an excellent game and his work ethic and ball control was a marked
    improvement on performances earlier this season. Even the media critics acknowledged this and made him man of the match.

  41. Emiratesstroller

    There are two factors which should not be ignored at this stage of the season.

    First Spurs have now lost TEN games this season. So their form when losing games is not just confined to matches against top 6.

    Second both Man Utd and Chelsea have significantly worse goals difference to
    us and that is an important consideration at the end of the season.

  42. Guns of sf

    Nw9

    Ozil was so slow and hardly created shit. The first half was like a snore fest

    Same old ozil
    Not sure what everyone is raving about!
    Slow no help defensively
    Only after emery gave the half time tank he worked for a little bit

    Mikki is much quicker and better with the ball in my opinion

    Ozil slows the game so much. Neeeds too much time on the ball

    But it’s all been said before

    Just my 2 cents

  43. Words on a Blog

    Back from the Emirates.

    A satisfying and professional performance, I thought. Lots of slick patterns and quick interchanges, if a little laboured in parts of the first half, when at times our attack was a little over-elaborate and a little slow.

    Until Auba came on, there was just a bit too much focus on the left hand side. Players weren’t using AMN as an outlet on the right hand side. That changed in the last 20 minutes or so, when AMN drove forward pretty effectively on the right hand channel.

    People on here have their favourites and their pet hates, but I thought pretty much every player put in a solid performance.

    Mind you, it helped that Newcastle were ultra defensive and showed no ambition whatsoever for large parts of the match.

    When they did try to put some attacks together in the first part of the second half, we dealt with them very well, and they were pretty ineffectual.

    7-8 out of 10 team performance.

  44. Words on a Blog

    LeMassif,

    Thanks. I have to say that in the last few matches (at home) we’ve put in some pretty solid and effective performances, with lots of variety in attack and far fewer heart-in-mouth moments from the likes of Mustafi.

    Now if we could only replicate these kinds of performances away from home…..

    Everton away will be massive. If we manage a good performance and a good result against them that’ll give us the confidence we need away from home and should be well on our way towards a top 4 place….fingers crossed.

  45. Sid

    I’ve called out Ozil a lot of times, but he was good today. Those dissing on him today are just wankers, sure he prolly still isint worth 350k but the lad tried today and was involved in some of our best play.

  46. Sid

    On our away form, I think if Kos is back and we play 3 cb with sok, Kos and Monreal, we would see a much better return.

    Some of our away defeats were with playing a morbidly makeshift backline which cost us some points.

    Don’t remember who, but there was some talk on here about Benitez being better than Emery etc, what banter that!!

    3rd with 7 to go, already equalled last season tally with 21 points still to play for, emery take a bow.

    By the way, has anyone else noticed our set-pieces becoming quite innovative over the last few months? And we have conceded the least from set-pieces , imagine that from being the perpetual set-piece flounders.

  47. Takin the Mhik

    Here’s a stat that Pierre will love, and no doubt infuriate some of the Ozil haters on here:

    Mesut Ozil has created more chances (36) in the Premier League this season than any other Arsenal player.

    He’s played 1,352 out of the 2,790 available minutes.

    He’s paid big money to create chances for his teammates, and he’s doing just that.

  48. TheLegendaryDB10

    ES

    People on here have their favourites and their pet hates, but I thought pretty much every player put in a solid performance.

    I agree with this. There were times where you could clearly see us play as a team attacking and pressing with gusto (and unfortunately followed by a disastrous move) which is a very good sign for things to come (in the grand scheme of building the team). This is starting to make this summer’s TW more important than ever.

  49. Words on a Blog

    Sid,

    Yeah, you’re right.

    Three at the back with Kos in for Mustafi is definitely the way to go for the away matches. Let’s just hope that AMN and Kola don’t pick up any injuries so we can keep playing that way.

    Centre Midfield and upfront, there’s lots of different permutations, so we’re less vulnerable there if we pick up one or two injuries…..

  50. Words on a Blog

    Legendary DB10

    Yes, the transfer window will be key.

    As Emirates has said before, we’ll need a left back/wingback to compete/alternate with Kola, a Ramsey Mark 2 in centre mid to provide drive and a few goals, and a solid (hopefully “statement”) centre-back.

    If we sell one of Mikki or Iwobi, I’d have a tricky winger too….

  51. Marko

    Here’s a stat that Pierre will love, and no doubt infuriate some of the Ozil haters on here:Mesut Ozil has created more chances (36) in the Premier League this season than any other Arsenal player.He’s played 1,352 out of the 2,790 available minutes.He’s paid big money to create chances for his teammates, and he’s doing just that.

    Ah yes but he has 3 whole assists for the season. Iwobi has 7 Ramsey have 6 and Mhiki has 6. I’m not sure he can get away with chances created anymore. He’s nowhere on the premier league big chances created. Must be teeny tiny chances he’s creating.

    https://www.premierleague.com/stats/top/players/big_chance_created

  52. Marko

    Coincidentally we’re being linked with Ryan Fraser who’s created more chances than Ozil this season and the last two I believe.

  53. Words on a Blog

    Marko,

    I saw the links to Ryan Fraser too. Not sure how much there is in them.

    I’ve quite liked him when I’ve seen him, but do you think he’s at the right level for us?

  54. Takin the Mhik

    Marko

    “Ah yes but he has 3 whole assists for the season. Iwobi has 7 Ramsey have 6 and Mhiki has 6. I’m not sure he can get away with chances created anymore. He’s nowhere on the premier league big chances created. Must be teeny tiny chances he’s creating.”

    A chance is a chance, and his job as a number 10 is to create chances. Its not his fault the players hes setting up haven’t finished them.

  55. Words on a Blog

    Marko,

    Ozil is with us until the end of the season, and given how much he’s being paid, very probably next season too.

    It’s unproductive and pretty futile to have a back-and-forth with Pierre and others on his stats, which key stats to use, etc, etc.

    Sure he’s frustrating and ineffective a lot of the times, and may well be on a glide path to decline.

    But he can be pretty effective too, as he was in this match.

    I think he’s at his most effective against teams that don’t press well and effectively and/or sit back in a deep or medium block, where he helps us to retain possession, and helps us to unlockmdefences by providing a variety to our attacking patterns.

    So if he’s doing well in training I’d play him against most teams, except for Man City, Liverpool, Spurs, and maybe Watford.

  56. Takin the Mhik

    Since Ozil has came back in the team after a lengthy spell out (injured but I dont believe that).. his attitude has been first class.

    His work rate has improved, hes never complained or spoken to the media and hes improving every game.

    But because of his wages, half the fans fail to this and cant bare to look past the £350k a week.

    At the end of the day, hes back in the starting 11, playing well and we’re winning football matches, what’s to moan about?

  57. Words on a Blog

    Takin the Mhik

    Ozil is “back in the starting 11, paying well, and we’re winning football matches. What’s there to moan about?”

    I agree, but, sadly, we’re both guilty of being hopelessly naive.

    This is The Official Le Grove Comments Section, where people love moaning.

    In fact, for some commentators, life wouldn’t be worth living if they couldn’t moan.

    Better get used to it.

  58. Pierre

    Taking the mihk

    Every time Arsenal win another game with Ozil in the side , Marko( and a few others) can’t stand it as it proves him wrong time and time again .

    He is desperately hanging on to the Ozil assist stat as proof that Ozil can’t cut it anymore but anyone with a football brain can see the difference that he has made to the team since being reinstated into the team and will recognise the quality and composure he brings to the side.

    Since the Bate defeat we look a totally different football team , credit to Emery for changing course in his selection policy and credit to Ozil as well who must have felt under tremendous pressure to perform when he first came back into the side.

    The Bate defeat was a blessing in disguise, I’d hate to think where we would be now as the team were in turmoil in January.

  59. Pierre

    In the last I have been one of Ramsey’s biggest critics due to his lack of discipline when he played in a 2 man midfield.

    However, the last 3 games he has proved me wrong with his performances in central midfield.
    Did wenger also him too much freedom in midfield …Probably
    Has Emery installed some discipline into Ramsey …Probably

    It’s a pity he has waited this long to show the manager and the fans that he can play the central midfield role , I feel that if he had shown this earlier in the season there is no way Emery would let him go.

    Earlier in the season Emery tried Ramsey as the CAM but it didn’t work and it seems Emery lost faith in him..
    the first time Ramsey played a very disciplined role was away to Blackpool in the FA cup and I remember being impressed with his performance that day as the basically bossed the game.

  60. bennydevito

    Great win and a great performance.

    I watched the match at home with my son and we both couldn’t believe how bad the ref was. We also were both confused how Ozil got motm as Ramsey and Lacazette were much better but Ozil did have a pretty good game. The most noticeable improvement about Ozil is his work rate and tracking back; such an improvement than under Wenger and Emery dropping him really was a masterstroke.

    We’ve now got the same points as last season with 21 points still available, and we’ve now won 10 premier league games in a row at home which they were saying not even the invincibles achieved

    My son thinks we’ve got 3rd nailed now but I had to explain that we’ve still got 5 really tricky away games left so we’ll still be lucky to get top 4 but we’re in a great position nonetheless.

    Hopefully Wolves can do us a favour tomorrow night against utd but they were utter shite against Burnley so I’m not expecting much.

  61. Words on a Blog

    Pierre,

    I think you’re probably right that Emery did lose faith in Ramsey after he’d tried him as a central attacking midfielder. I saw the (home) matches and he certainly didn’t look very effective. At the time, and based on Ramsey’s performances as part of a 2 in a 4:2:3:1, he looked like he didn’t have the discipline to be part of the 2 in central midfield. Which was the right call, as in the (very) late Wenger era, he was given complete freedom to roam upfield, and he got caught out upfront way tooo many times.

    Whether that was all on Wenger or on Ramsey, who knows….but it’s a shame, because in the new system that’s emerging under Emery, Ramsey is a pretty key player.

  62. Words on a Blog

    BennyD,

    Wolves are always up for it and have their best performances against the top 6 sides…. they never appear to get their act together against bottom half teams, when they seem to feel they need to prove themselves.

    Here’s hoping they feel the need to prove their FA cup victory against Man U tied wasn’t a one-off….I’m sure you won’t mind if your son is proved right about us getting 3rd place!

  63. Nelson

    We all know that Ramsey has a history of injures. This year, he was benched a lot initially. Then he rotated with Ozil. Only in the last three games, he was called upon to play the box to box midfield role. His muscle problem is coming back. I am not so sure he can start every game for Juventus.

  64. Tony

    Very happy with the win last night although expected was also good to keep another clean sheet.

    Not getting into conspiracy talk here, but Taylor was very poor where the 2 disallowed goals would probably been given if VAR was in place. Taylor also got too many other decisions wrong for both teams.

    There needs to be accountability by the FA for referees and their assistants with severe penalties for poor and error prone judgement.

    In fact this should also be brought into effect with the VAR adjudicators/officials next season.

    So 3rd place over Spuds, my son and I couldn’t be happier having just watched the game because it was on at 2am this morning and fortunately my son is on his school holidays for the next 10 weeks.

    It’s really down to our away form to land CL football and as much as I hope and pray we’ll get the crucial away wins, I very much doubt we will.

    At least the run in is going to be one of excitement, tension and hopefully not derailed by a continued poor officials’ decision making for all teams – not just us.

  65. MidwestGun

    Ozil always plays well against Newcastle.. In 4 games against them in his Arsenal career coming in .. he had 3 goals and 1 assist. Basically he is their Kryptonite.

    We need him to play like that every match though… Newcastle isn’t exactly our biggest competition.. I’m glad he is playing well .. we need the creativity but we are paying him a stupid amount of money. It will hinder our ability to sign players who will demand a higher wage this summer. He will be almost impossible to move .. So we need consistency and productivity or we are screwed. If Emery can get that out of Ozil and finish 3rd then this season will have been a huge success by any measuring stick given where we came from last season. Still a long ways to go .. but fingers crossed. Very happy with this weeks results.

  66. China1

    Great result! Just what the doctor ordered!

    It was too late for me (3am kick off!) but what a result. It’s so very satisfying to see a team get cleanly dispatched, a clean sheet, a couple of goals, another win at the business end of the season, we are the league’s second most in form team after city and we’re up to third as spurs fall into a beautiful death spiral (no wins in their last 5 and 4 defeats I think!)

    It’s a lovely day to be a gooner

  67. Tony

    Don’t know if anyone else here has BEIN sports for their satellite but today in Thailand I was surprised to see Richard Keys & Andy Gray doing their old routine double act.

    Not as good as their original mix before they were axed, but a bit of rhetoric is better than nothing as Thailand rarely pays for English pre/post match/ half time punditry.

  68. China1

    Emery rightly came under criticism at some key junctures this season but if you told any of us a year ago that wenger would be gone and the new manager would have us in 3rd at this stage in the season and still in the EL I think almost everyone here would bite your hand off

    There’s work to be done. We need to keep our heads down and cross the finish line now, but this could go down as a very good start for emery if the end of the season matches its current trajectory

    I don’t think we could realistically have asked for more considering our circumstances

    Get this season over the finish line and go early and we’ll into the summer and we will have a lot of reasons to be excited about next season

  69. peanuts&monkeys

    Buy Dell Alli. He is better than Ramsey and perfect foil for development. If he costs 60-70 mill now, he could be worth 90 mill in 3 years. buy that chap.

    Oh! BTW, he also knows what a NLD is all about.

  70. Tony

    My conclusion thus far is Emery is ok for a transitional manager to dig us out of the Wenger/Gazidis quagmire, but have real concerns about Emery taking us to realistic PL and CL trophy contention.

    That said, I’m far more concerned about Raul’s ability and more impotantly his agenda, as I was even before Gazidis began his tenure and then even more once Gazidis took up his CEO position.

  71. peanuts&monkeys

    @China1 not sure what you imply by “considering our circumstances”. if only Arsenal had brought in an experienced PL defender…even Wes Morgan or Zouma or similar, there is no reason why Arsenal would not have been in the title race right now. Wenger’s departure was the biggest positive.
    There is now denying that was an unshackling of true potential of this team with ppl like Laca, Auba, Ozil, Torreira.

    Its sad in spite of a changing of manager, we wasted one more season and we are still miles away from a title challenge.

  72. Moray

    I didn’t see the game but im looking forward to an exciting end to the season.

    We have two really excellent teams slugging it out for top place and three decent teams and Spuds for the CL place. These same clubs are also in the latter stages of the European cups. You really couldn’t write this stuff.

    Chelsea winning by dodgy decisions at the weekend may in the end be a blessing if the Spuds continue to fall away. If they end up not qualifying for the CL next year with all this investment in the new stadium, that would be the icing on the cake for me. Particularly in the last few games of the season momentum counts for a lot and their last five games are showing a hell of a lot of red bars.

  73. Emiratesstroller

    Arsenal have got themselves in the mix to finish in the top 4 this season and that is an achievement in itself when you consider that by April we have been out of the frame in last two seasons.

    Our home form has been excellent with only Man City beating us at the Emirates in the first match of season. The mood and atmosphere in Emirates has improved dramatically as a consequence.

    Where we are struggling is of course in away games and that needs now to be
    resolved if we are going to finish in top four and maybe win the Europa Cup.

    We know the problem is that Arsenal are weak at the back and that defensively we are brittle. The team needs to focus on its strengths, which are
    playing as we do at home with a high press attacking game.

    The formation we are currently playing suits us quite well with three at back,
    a diamond formation in midfield and realistically two forwards.

    Both Xhaka and Torreira were missing yesterday and they are in my view an
    upgrade on Guendouzi in holding positing in midfield. Guenouzi is a promising player, but has still some way to go to be finished article. He is still
    prone to mistakes.

    Aubameyang had been ill over weekend, and did not start, but when he plays
    alongside Lacazette it makes a real difference to our attack. Realistically Iwobi
    is not in the same class or offers the same threat.

    What is also now beginning to happen is that both Ozil and Ramsey are now playing well at the same time and that is making a real difference to
    the team. Some posters continue to make negative comments, but at the
    moment I would not hesitate in playing both in our starting eleven.

    The weekend game against Everton is probably our most difficult remaining
    fixture of the season. They are playing well at the moment particularly at home. However, they have lost 5 matches at home and Arsenal have on the whole a reasonably good record against them.

    If we win this fixture then I think that we have a good chance of achieving the
    top 4 platform that is vital to confirm our progress.

  74. gonsterous

    woke up and checked the result, fk yeah. today’s going to be a good day. forget third im looking to catch the top 2 dogs now (I’m kidding of course). 2 points clear with the easier run in. We can definitely finish third. Someone earlier Said we are starting to see more of emerys play but I think it was evident since we played chelsea way back at the start of the season. If you look at that game, the clear instructions attacking wise, was to get to the by line and have the fullbacks or wingers pull back the crosses. Low and mostly to the penalty spot.
    The defence has taken a bit longer but we are finally getting there. I think with another good CB addition, we could become very solid defensively.
    fk it, emery IN.

  75. Leedsgunner

    Nothing wrong with the two disallowed goals. Loved the work ethic of the team. I don’t know who actually received the MotM but Guendouzi was excellent.

  76. Emiratesstroller

    I have just looked at our record against Everton in last 20 games we have played against them.

    P20 W13 D5 L2 F39 A20. They have managed only one home victory against
    us in those fixtures.

    So Arsenal have a very good record against them including a double last season.

  77. Leedsgunner

    The standard should be to win all our remaining matches. No reason barring injuries why we can’t do this. We went on a long run at the start of the season why not now?

  78. Emiratesstroller

    Leedsgunner

    Interestingly Arsenal have got a very good AWAY record against all our remaining opponents apart from Watford who have beaten us in last 2 fixtures.

    As I posted Everton have beaten us just once in their away fixtures in last 20 games. Leicester have beaten us only once in EPL and both Burnley and Wolves have yet to beat us in EPL.

    So we should look at these fixtures in a positive frame.

  79. Receding Hairline

    Tony will be difficult for any manager to lead us to a PL title if 70m and a few loans is all we are willing to do.

    I don’t buy this talk of Emery just being good enough to set us straight while someone else now waltz in and gets to spend money. That doesn’t sound right to me.

  80. Graham62

    7/8 out of 10.

    Very solid. Good tempo. All the players looked up for it.

    Everton away next, won’t be easy. If they play with the same intensity can see us getting a positive result.

    One game at a time.

  81. Valentin

    Great victory and great game yesterday.

    Looks like our recruitment has already started in earnest. There are reports that Arsenal made a loan-to-buy bid for Umtiti similar to the Denis Suarez deal, with a €5m fee followed by a permanent option set at €40m.
    At that price assuming that he passes his medical the deal is a no-brainer.
    Barcelona is likely to want something closer to €60m~€80m, but if true it is not a bad opening.

  82. Pierre

    I can see a difference in our game now compared to our unbeaten run earlier in the season .
    During our unbeaten run we looked vulnerable down the channels and teams were creating many opportunities to get behind our defence leading to goalscoring chances, our play was hectic with a hint of desperation to push players forward which left holes through midfield and defence.

    I know I have been harping on about playing with patience and intelligence and keeping possession of the football but I do believe that now we have brought these aspects of our play into our game it is taking pressure off the defence and consequently we look tighter at the back.

    The question is, can we take our home form on the road , can we retain possession of the ball , can we control the game…I don’t see why not.

    Emery has to be positive in his team selections and tactics , we became very negative during our recent poor run of games , he has to trust the players that have reignited the season .

  83. Leftsidesanch

    Emery has to be positive in his team selections and tactics , we became very negative during our recent poor run of games , he has to trust the players that have reignited the season .

    You write good pieces of work on here, then almost always ruin it with your needless barbs, your like a woman.

  84. Al

    Nacho Monreal was immense yesterday. Another candidate for POTY for us.

    He just a quality player with a fantastic attitude. Also hasn’t seemed to slow down or age so far so hopefully may it long continue.

  85. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    When both laca n Aruba on the pitch thesis a good buzz about the pair. On the pitch.

    Maybe we should start them both in away matches…

    With Torreira back n cumbersome xhara …

    Will he change up the line up….

  86. Thomas

    @Sid

    Don’t remember who, but there was some talk on here about Benitez being better than Emery etc, what banter that!!

    ___

    Well one of them have won the CL, the other messed up a 4-0 aggregate lead. Just saying.

  87. Emiratesstroller

    Looking forward to the forthcoming transfer window and next season I do not
    think that Arsenal will recruit more than four new players. I am discounting
    the 17 year old Brazilian who may or may not be added.

    I foresee 9 potential departures namely:
    GK Cech/Ospina/Martinez
    CB Mustafi
    RB Lichteiner/Jenkinson
    LB Monreal
    DMF Elneny
    CMF Ramsey

    Maitland-Niles will almost certainly compete with Bellerin for the right wing back position. I see also Chambers returning as a replacement for Elneny not
    only as a utility player but home grown option.

    I would expect also that Arsenal will promote at least one U23 Home Grown
    player to squad. The most likely choice would be Reiss Nelson who was out
    this season in Bundesliga.

    Personally I would retain also Welbeck as a third string Striker option, because it would be madness to allow yet another player to leave on a Bosman
    this summer.

    Despite all the negativity I think that both Ozil and Mkhitaryan will be here
    next season UNLESS someone comes in with a decent offer, which in the case
    of Ozil is most unlikely.

    So considering our modest budget, which even allowing for potential modest
    potential sales of Mustafi and Elneny is unlikely to exceed £100 million I
    see our budget being spent on
    First String Centre Back to replace Mustafi.
    First String Central Midfield to replace Ramsey
    Left Wing Back to replace Monreal and compete with Kolasinac
    Second String Goalkeeper to replace Cech unless Martinez is promoted.

    Other U23 players could be also promoted to first team squad, but loaned out
    to Bundesliga Teams eg
    Willock
    Smith-Rowe
    Nkietah