Should have been Hector

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Well good morning. ALLEGEDLY, all is not well over at Spurs. I have sourced expert information from Twitter nobodies that suggests the Spurs camp is going through a very similar episode to the JT and Wayne Bridge saga from way back when.

Very amusing. No wonder they all look so miserable.

Hector Bellerin has been talking to The Guardian about how he’s so fucking woke these days, he actually gets offended by the things people could potentially say.

‘Pete, I’m really angry that at any point, you could say something awful that could upset someone’

‘But Hector, I didn’t say a thing?’

‘Pete, beyond the point. You ‘could’ (air quotes) say something offensive, so how can we be friends?’

Love that guy. Bit gutted he hates me in my imaginary construct.

He did let the mask slip though. He’s out here telling the world that competitive sport isn’t an alpha male endeavour, two paragraphs later, he’s heading out to a Ricky G show… a man who savaged disabled kids on a TV special way back when (Listen to this Sam Harris/Gervais pod, it’s great).

What we say on Twitter vs what we think in real life… that’s the next pivot in culture kids, the people are coming for over-wokeness and I can’t wait. Unai Emery will hopefully stop telling everyone that ‘defensive midfield is a social construct’ and we’ll have LT sitting at the base of midfield. Good times.

I do genuinely love Hector. I think he’s the modern-day superstar. He doesn’t care what people think. He’s a top athlete. He never gets caught up in anything obscene (bar some occasional fashion mishaps). I have to say, for me, he was the logical choice for the armband if the alternative was Xhaka.

He’s 100% a starter every game, he’s mostly always fit, he gives his all, and the fans universally adore him… bar a few of the ‘LEAVE MEANS LEAVE’ brigade who are still salty Jenks took his marching orders.

I do need to make a correction, I stated yesterday that I found it odd that Emery dodged the 5 captain thing. Apparently, I was incorrect. He did it. He still managed to fuck it up.


I was with my Arsenal friend earlier today and I couldn’t fathom the decision.


That’s a bit like The Guardian making Milo their Chief Editor. Bernie Sanders making an exGoldman Sachs exec his VP running partner. Batman bringing in the Joker to run R&D at his Batcave.

A player the coach hates. Someone the club tried to move on all summer. Someone that can’t even make 90 minutes against Forest in the Carling Cup. A player that takes sick days to escape away days. Someone that can’t press, defend or turn up for big games. A player so bored of life, he’s basically a professional gamer.

Quite incredible.

Why do it?

Is it a troll? If so, that’s childish.

Is it an olive branch…?

‘Please don’t say mean things to the others about me’

Or is it just another bad decision that reeks of cuckness?

Most of the problems Emery has this season are of his own making, but at the core of it, the squad he has this year is much better. A great result against United this week will go a long way to restoring some faith in the Spaniard, then we’re off on a run of some very easy games. He should deliver enough good results to have everyone prematurely questioning whether people like me have prematurely judged him too early by December 12th.

The thing we have be careful of is 1) Spurs will bounce back 2) I think Frank Lampard is building something strong at Chelsea that might come good this season 3) ‘sacked in the morning’ might happen, and United might finally stumble upon a good manager.

We’ll see.

Short one today, see you in the comments. x

P.S. Get in the mood for the United game with this excellent podcast from the Mundial chaps.

430 Responses to “Should have been Hector”

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  1. China1

    Wenger used to give the good talk all the time about the next level and the rest – empty hot air

    Gazidis used to give it the good talk – empty hot air

    We arsenal fans have been stung many times by trusting quotes from people who are free to say whatever they want for whatever reasons they have. You are very trusting after all that

    The club we’re giving it the good talk halfway through the summer but most of us didn’t start to have faith to the club went out and signed Pepe. Talking is the easy bit. Delivering is another story

  2. China1

    Emery obviously was a great talker in his interview and when he joined.

    A dossier on the players with in depth knowledge. A great wish to be protagonists in games. A guy who talks of analyzing endless hours of footage to better understand

    Yet what did any of those speeches amount to? You know the answer.

    I also believe emery actually did/does believe in what he said and seems a genuine guy. Yet it’s much easier to talk of being a protagonist and constantly learning from mistakes and the reality. This why we play crap football, are not protagonists and he only just realized xhaka makes mistakes.


  3. Tony

    Always respected GG except the bungs of course.

    A trip down memory lane for some and will be new for the younger AW time fans.

    Time to banish the past and start winning at OT tonight.

    Over to Emery to make the right selections or just fcuk it up as he seems to do these days.

    ‘It will be at least three years before Manchester United or Arsenal can challenge at the top’: Gunners legend GEORGE GRAHAM on the big game as he recalls the infamous ‘Battle of Old Trafford’ in 1990′

    George Graham believes Arsenal and Manchester United will struggle this term

    The Scot managed Arsenal when the rivalry began back in October 1990

    The 74-year-old believes both teams currently lack players with leadership skills

    He says both clubs are still recovering from losing their most successful bosses

  4. Bojangles

    According to the Mirror,

    “Arsenal want to loan out Mesut Ozil in January – even if they have to subsidise his wages.”

    We couldn’t shift him in the summer, Fenerbahce being the only club showing any interest in taking him on loan and I doubt there are too many new admirers waiting in the wings.

    I am no fan of Özil. I see him as a lazy player with an unprofessional attitude. He is a quality player when the wind is blowing in the right direction, unfortunately at the Emirates it doesn’t blow in that direction often enough. Even so, if I had to choose who to keep from Özil or our new captain, Özil would comfortably be my choice.

  5. Sid

    “Graham, the fixation on Arteta is largely a defence mechanism for those that pinned hope on Emery.”

    You could switch the names and the statement will remain true

  6. Emiratesstroller

    The next three games will prove a testing schedule. Personally I find it ridiculous that we are playing Man Utd on Monday, Standard Liege on Thursday and Bournemouth on Sunday.

    You would have thought that the TV Schedulers and EPL could have arranged the Old Trafford Game over weekend particularly since Arsenal were accommodating with last week’s Carrabo Cup.

    Arsenal will need to use their playing resources very carefully over next 6 days.

    What has been crystal clear sofar this season is that Arsenal have as yet not
    found a settled team to play in the EPL by virtue of injuries and other factors.

    My guess is that within the next two to three weeks our defence could well
    be very different from what we have been playing sofar this season. It would
    not surprise me that our first choice backline will end up being Bellerin, Mustafi,Holding and Tierney.

    Mustafi may prove somewhat contentious with many posters but I think that
    he is a better player than Sokratis and playing alongside Holding and Bellerin
    might prove a far more solid format than we have seen sofar this season.

  7. China1

    Yeah you really must wonder how they can justify putting arsenal utd on a Monday rather than a Sunday

    It’s also annoying for me personally because evening games are too late for me (2:45am kick off or something ridiculous).

    I don’t really have a good feeling about this game. Honestly we should go there and give them a shafting, as they’re really there for the taking. But history and gut feeling tells me this is going to go much worse than it should on paper

  8. Bojangles

    Petit on Xhaka

    “I have not been impressed by Xhaka since he signed for Arsenal.

    “Sometimes I think he has a good game and shows personality on the pitch – his best quality is his passing.

    “But when they try to get the ball back he is making so many fouls and getting yellow cards, stupidly as well. He can score from distance but he is not the player I was expecting.

    “He is not for me the main guy as a holding midfielder. He needs to improve in different aspects. He was named captain but I don’t see him as leader in the team.”

  9. Cesc Appeal

    We’re just going through stages of the ‘stupid man who built his house upon (insert weak foundations here)’.

    First it was Ozil that everyone wanted the team built around, a player who whilst he has certain attributes is a fundamentally flawed player in terms of his one dimensional nature, poor work rate, poor physicality and poor attitude.

    Now it is Xhaka that Emery and a small portion of fans want our team built around. He has a better attitude that Ozil and his work rate isn’t bad, but he’s one dimensional and fundamentally flawed once more. You rarely see a player so ill suited to a league.

    Unless the armband turns Xhaka into a player we’ve yet to see this decision likely costs Emery his job at the end of the season. When the man setting the tone for your team slap bang in the middle of your side is slow, ponderous, scared, unable to deal with pressure and error prone the results are obvious…or should be obvious to everyone.

  10. Pierre

    We can more or less play 2 different starting eleven for the next 2 games so schedule should be manageable.

    The way I look at it, tonight’s game is a no win situation for Emery .
    United’s injuries and poor form have lifted the expectation for an Arsenal victory.

    He is not in an enviable situation for him, anything other than a victory will be regarded as a failure by the fans and media.

    United will raise their game v Arsenal at old Trafford , they always do .
    As far as I’m concerned a draw will be a good result .

    The performance is just as important as the result in my opinion.
    I think the fans are fed up with watching our brand of schoolboy football and want to see progress in our game ,they don’t want to see an Ill disciplined performance with a badly set up team.

    The midfield is the key , If Emery persists with the midfield diamond and it is a failure then he only has himself to blame.

  11. Batistuta


    Have to disagree there man, a draw at Old Trafford with their playing resources at the moment would be a very bad result, know it’s being said a couple of times over the years but that’s as poor a united squad as I’ve ever seen so no excuses for us really. Anything asides a win would be a bad result

  12. Ishola70

    If Arsenal can give up a two goal lead away against such a poor team as Watford then they can go down at Old Trafford.

    Let’s be realistic about this.

    Arsenal’s away form over the past few seasons has been rank.

    Man United despite their problems for years now can turn up at Old Trafford when the fancy takes them.

    In these circumstances a draw is not the end of the world.

    It’s one of those matches where any result would not be surprising loss, draw or a narrow win.

    But to expect or demand a definite win there is a bit of wishful thinking.

  13. Emiratesstroller


    Yes we are better equipped to play different teams this season for midweek and weekend games.

    Nevertheless the scheduling for both Arsenal and Man Utd is both necessary
    and poses serious questions about neutrality of the fixture schedulers.

    On a different matter I made the case that I could see an entirely different
    backline playing in EPL for rest of season namely Bellerin, Mustafi, Holding
    and Tierney.

    Interestingly the Daily Telegraph published today an interesting stat that
    Arsenal did not lose a single game last season when Holding played. I have
    not checked the stats, but it would not surprise me that Bellerin and Mustafi
    played also in those games.

    Arsenal’s decline started with the absence of Bellerin and Holding and the
    introduction last season of Koscielny and Maitland-Niles as their replacements.

  14. Ishola70

    It will boil down to as most matches do who wants the result the most. Who is more hungry for the victory.

    If Man United lose they became a little detached from the top four.

    Which of the teams will see victory as more paramount?

  15. Emiratesstroller

    Arsenal need to build a settled team if we are going to achieve a top 4 finish in
    EPL. Assuming that everyone is match fit my starting X1s would be:

    EPL weekend

    Cup Games Midweek

    Bench Players

  16. Ishola70


    Holding’s run of games coincided with the unbeaten run which is true but there have been plenty that have questioned just how good that unbeaten run really was. No top team played away from home in that run.

    Holding shouldn’t be put forward as just one player that would make the team unbeatable.

    None of us know whether Holding would have suffered along with the rest of the team if he had been ever present for the whole season as the season continued and more testing matches came along.

    Holding has become yet another player that is waxed lyrical about because of his absence from the team. He joins a long list of other Arsenal players in the case of if only. If only he was available.

    It’s never ending these hard luck stories.

  17. Pierre

    Uniteds potential starting lineup is still pretty strong even if none of the injured players make it for today’s game.

    De Gea, Bissaka, lingelof, Maguire, young in defence.

    Midfield of mctominay, matic, Mata .

    Expect a physical game , Mctominay is a dirty git who, if allowed by the ref , will leave his foot in at every opportunity.

    As per usual, the referee and if he is strong enough , could have bearing on the outcome.

    United, I expect will be very physical….remember their manager had many years playing under Ferguson.

  18. Ishola70


    You are sounding like Arsene Wenger.

    Man United too physical eh?

    Perhaps like Wenger you would secretly wish that football becomes a no contact sport with physicality taken out of the game. Just artististic stuff to see. A bit like ice skating.

    This thinking is why so many teams saw and still see Arsenal as a soft touch too many times especially when Arsenal are playing away from home.

  19. Batistuta


    While their defence is pretty “strong”, their foward line will probably be Mata, Rashford and Pereira or Greenwood, if we play an attacking game then see no reason why we shouldn’t win, all on the manager and the set up though at the end of the day but still feels like they are right there for the taking

  20. Ishola70

    If the game becomes physical Pierre especially in midfield area and United are competitive in that area of the pitch then we all know it is going to be a long night for Arsenal.

    So I fully understand your concerns.

  21. Valentin


    I agree with your defense lineup, but I don’t think that Mata will start.
    If Pogba is fit, it is more likely to be Matic, McTominay, Pogba. With Greenwood, James and Lingard upfront.
    I can see a red card on both side. McTominay or Matic kicking lump on Guendouzi. And Xhaka two yellows for one too many fouls and the referee influenced by the atmosphere and the baying fans.

  22. Ishola70

    I have concerns with Pogba if he plays and McTominay.

    Pogba is obviously capable to make strong runs directly into the opposition penalty area from midfield and so is McTominay.

    McTominay is a very direct physical player that likes to make runs on the ball into the opposition penalty area.

    And we all know who will be trying to stop those runs right. Yes our very own Granit Xhaka.

  23. Valentin

    Arsenal really went for the wrong Dortmund CB, Man City isbreported wanting Leicester centre-back Caglar Soyuncu. He was available for 20~25 millions and we got Sokratis. Now one is valued at less than what we paid for , the other one as at least twice what Leicester paid for.

  24. Emiratesstroller


    I am not suggesting for one moment that keeping Mustafi in our lineout would be a long term solution.

    However, the fact is that Arsenal did not lose in the 16 games that Holding played and I am pretty sure that Bellerin and Mustafi played in most if not all those games.

    Surely it is better to start with the proposition that this is the best formation
    with Tierney included.

    One thing is for sure I would never play Maitland-Niles again in the backline.
    I am 100% convinced that he is the achilles heel identified by almost every team that we play. That includes teams like Watford and Crystal Palace who
    play to their strength and our weakness on that wing when we play them.

  25. Ishola70


    I’m not suggesting that your line-up is incorrect.

    It’s just this line that many like to give about Holding being involved in the unbeaten run last season.

    It implies that with Holding everything is resolved.

    It may improve matters but it doesn’t resolve.

  26. Emiratesstroller


    My view as I have posted is that there is one piece in backline jigsaw which needs to be resolved before start of next season.

    We need a World Class Centre Back to play alongside Holding, Bellerin and Tierney.

    I don’t know personally anything about Saliba, but at best he is a bench player
    in short term and I would include Chambers in that category as well.

    Personally I have never understood why we recruited both Sokratis and Luiz.
    Both are near the end of their careers and neither is starting X1 quality for a
    team with ambition to secure a top 4 League and Champions League Place.

  27. Emiratesstroller

    Ishola 70

    The point I make is that you use a formula which was better than anything which we have played since. They were UNBEATEN and did not ship in the large number of silly and unnecessary goals since both Bellerin and Holding last played.

  28. Ishola70

    Pedro pinpointed McGinn as a danger the other week in the Aston Villa game. This proved correct.

    But you can say this with any team Arsenal are playing against where the opposition have a midfielder that likes to make runs into the Arsenal penalty box.

    Real weakness of the Arsenal team = being able to track and cope with opposition midfield runners running into the Arsenal penalty area. Poor defensively and off the ball.

  29. Ishola70

    lol poor old Boris.

    They are really trying to kill him off in quick time.

    Did Charlotte Edwards report to the police this inappropiate “groping” at the time of incident?

    And plenty of mostly female Labour members it must be said unashamedly now using the death of Jo Cox as a political tool.

  30. Valentin


    Having seen Boris the clown at close quarter when he tries his luck with two of my colleagues at a work shindig, I have no sympathy for that narcissist opportunist.
    The fact that there was two journalists and that he tried his luck with both should tell you what kind of man he is.
    However what he is most likely to kill his political career is the investigation with the “American friend” and his afternoon “technology lessons”. Not eligible for a visa, got a visa. Not eligible for grant, got a grant. Not eligible for travel, travelled in prominent position with Johnson. Misconduct in public office is a serious offence that can lead to jail. Hopefully that will destroy the career of that dangerous buffoon.

  31. terraloon


    Was thinking very much the same as you.

    It’s pretty clear that there is some sort of concerted attempt to get rid of Boris you can only think that as opposed to their view on May they are worried about what Boris will achieve.

  32. Ishola70

    He’s got an eye for the ladies yes has Boris.

    And anyone who sprinkles his speeches with classical quotations is fine by me.

    These elite liberals are sickening with their holier than thou image they want to give out.

    And we know it’s all bullshit. They play around as well.

  33. HighburyLegend

    “Arsenal are finally ready to ditch Mesut Ozil by sending him out on loan in January – and will even pay for him to leave the club.”

    Happy Monday, Pierre…

  34. Ishola70

    “Was thinking very much the same as you.It’s pretty clear that there is some sort of concerted attempt to get rid of Boris you can only think that as opposed to their view on May they are worried about what Boris will achieve.”

    Boris is the danger to their continued block of the democratic vote to leave the EU. Of course they want to kill him quickly. Unfortunately they will get their way.

    The goings on at parliament the other week was quite disgusting. All these Labour MPs one after another citing Jo Cox and talking about aggressive language. It wasn’t even heartfelt. It was an obviously pre-planned, concerted, cold, new avenue of political attack from them.

  35. London gunner

    Boris is a terrible leader so clearly doesn’t care about the country just his own personal profit and power. Classic politician.

  36. Ishola70

    If Corbyn had the bollocks to go for a general election toe to toe with Boris the conservatiive man would win easily.

    You see voters would be more inclined to go with Boris as you could see him being much more entertaining on I’m a celebrity get me out of here than Jeremy would ever be.

    The populist vote you see. It’s all about populist now.

    That scary word eh populist.

  37. terraloon


    Again in 100% agreement.

    I worked for a while for under a man( I was a civil servant) who moved in the very highest of both political and indeed social circles. For one reason or another he was subjected to a significant amount of female attention from subordinates who we’re continually knocked back ( he fancied me as a male far more than them)
    I had to attend a disciplinary hearing following accusations that he was in appropriate with two ladies who coincidentally were both not worthy of the promotion they desired.The funny part was on one of the dates of the alleged incidents the chap was in New Zealand.
    Now I don’t doubt that Boris is what used to be called a ladies man but for me unless you make complaints of this sort in a reasonable timeframe ( that’s not 20 years later)then you have to question firstly their validity and secondary the reasons why wait so long.

  38. London gunner


    Not quite as disgusting as attacking disabled peoples right to aide and trying to sell of the nhs… we will leave that to the Tories I guess.

  39. Jamie

    3 points is a must tonight. I think we’ll draw..

    p.s. no idea why Marko gets such a hard time. I agree with him re:Arteta – all evidence in support of Arteta having pizzazz is purely anecdotal at this point.

    What’s tragic is the impunity at which a few shit posters come here and straight-up lie to the crowd on the regular (“I have been told by special sources,” or “I’ve been supporting Arsenal for 50 years..”), but it’s all gravy because they’re vocal ‘Emery out-ers’.


    Also, BoJo is going down in flames. He went to school in Brussels ffs. Sure, to the shitty European School rather than ISB, but still.. Anyone who grew up as an expat in Brussels loved it. True story. He’s an opportunist, nothing more.

  40. terraloon


    Ironically it’s why May didn’t get the majority she craved.At that point in Time Corbyn was very cleverly marketed.

    Corby is a shallow man whose beliefs, opinions and history weren’t examined in depth at the last election but you can be sure come the next election that the Tory machine, the press and maybe leaders debates will his aspirations destroyed .

  41. Biggles

    I’ve been a bit more accepting and forgiving of Emery than a lot of folk around here.

    Xhaka as captain however is basically unforgivable.

    A while back, I listed what I felt were the biggest issues with Arsenal. #1 Ozil, #2, Mkhitaryan, #3 a tie between Xhaka and Mustafi, #4 a tie between Koscielny and Monreal (on age, pace and fitness concerns, rather than skill or attitude).

    Of these, #1 hasn’t been resolved but has somewhat been mitigated because Ozil barely plays now. #2 is semi-resolved because Mkhitaryan is away albeit not permanently. #4 is resolved as both have gone. The problem remains #3, because although Mustafi got dropped from the first team in the league, Xhaka remains an automatic first pick for reasons that I just don’t get. Sure, he has a big part in our build up play and has a decent pass on him, but he makes so many mistakes and offers so little defensively that he’s odds on to get a card in every game. And the amount of goals he costs us… it’s just not funny. We are so much better without him, and we can all see it.

    So what did Emery do?

    He bloody well slapped us in the face.

  42. Ishola70

    Corbyn has also got very old and meek looking overnight.

    Looks like he could be on the cod and parsley sauce dinner real soon.

    And again this aspect won’t go down too well in regards the populist vote I’m afraid.

  43. HighburyLegend

    “3 points is a must tonight. I think we’ll draw..”

    And I think Manure will have – at least – 1 penalty.
    (thanks to Granité and Luiz, aka Dumb & Dumber)

  44. Valentin


    I think that was exactly the opposite.
    Some members of parliament have received death threat. On both side. See the momentum banner at the Tory conference.
    If Boris Johnson had shown a modicum of empathy, and restraint but no the petulant idiot had to use Jo Cox murder to score points. That did not go down very well, because unlike him despite being a staunch remainer she was well like by most member of parliament.
    He is finding out that Dominic Cumming may be a good election strategist, but a poor advisor. In the British political system, the government needs the support of the parliament. He does not have it. Whatever he does, he won’t have it. Michael Gove is already preparing for a different prime minister after Boris failed to bring Brexit.

  45. Jamie

    HL –

    “And I think Manure will have – at least – 1 penalty.”

    I approve this post. We need 3 goals to be safe, but we always shit the bed at OT. Not confident at all.

  46. Ishola70


    Boris didn’t bring up Jo Cox in the chamber in the first place.

    The scheming calculated Labour MPs did.

    And Jo Cox husband said himself that he was uncomfortable with his deceased wife being used as a political tool.

    Bu that’s just what these Labour MPs did.

  47. Ishola70


    ” In the British political system, the government needs the support of the parliament. He does not have it.”

    lol this is not just about Boris.

    No Conservative government is going to get parliamentary support and we all know why this is so.

    Establishment blocking democrat vote.

  48. Emiratesstroller


    I don’t want to engage in politics on this website but there are plenty of politicians in Parliament with a track record of “sexual indiscretions” going
    back in time.

    Mr Corbyn was not adverse to such matters and had a twinkle in his eye when
    opportunity arose. Politicians have one of the highest divorce rates in any

    What we are seeing at the moment is a concerted effort to discredit Johnson
    and sabotage Brexit by whatever means is available.

  49. Pierre

    “#1 hasn’t been resolved but has somewhat been mitigated because Ozil barely plays now.”

    This has really improved our performances on the pitch hasn’t it.

    The team , without Ozil .

    look better defensively
    Have improved our away form,
    look more disciplined.
    Play with more composure .
    Are not as wasteful in possession of the ball.
    Are more solid as a team.
    Play better football.

    Yeah , the improvement in our football without Ozil has improved immeasurably.

  50. Ishola70

    lol remember when that old liberal Vincey Cable got knobbled by that young girl flirting with him.

    He wish he was knobbled as well. Alas for Vincey only stitched up.

  51. Emiratesstroller

    For the record I worked part-time for 5 years in the office of an MP when I was
    articled to a firm of solicitors in which the MP was senior partner.

    So I had a pretty good insight in what went on in Parliament.

    Our political class are not a bunch of angels and singling out Boris is ludicrous.

    President Mitterrand kept his mistress in the Elysee Palace along with his
    wife! So lets not moralise too much.

  52. Jamie

    “What aboutism” is the worst line of defence.

    We need a fresh post so we can move away from politics and towards how we think the game tonight might play out.

  53. Grouvillegooner

    A propos earlier comments on Holding. He was playing very well last season why (why Wenger did not trust him was always a mystery) until his injury ( Emery overplayed him) and would have been close to an England call up. However he is not a world beater and will need a gentle easing back from an ACL. Hopefully we will see a Chambers /Holding pairing by the end of October and Sokratis can be confined to the Caraboa.

  54. London gunner

    Wow suprised we got soo many out of touch boris supporters on this site.

    Funny how the baby boomers and generation x is full of boris supporters the same lot who allowed the financial recession and sold the millennials futures by short sighted economics and environmental policies.

  55. London gunner


    Corbyn is shallow what does that make boris johnson who cares not for the middle or working class majority of the country but cares for vested interests and his eton buddies.

    There hasn’t been a great conservative leader till winston churchill.

  56. Receding Hairline

    “A propos earlier comments on Holding. He was playing very well last season why (why Wenger did not trust him was always a mystery) until his injury ( Emery overplayed him) ”

    One manager did not trust him, the one that did overplayed him..what’s the middle ground? One game a month? Rob Holding made 15 appearances in all last season, hardly shocking numbers.

  57. Bamford10

    It’s rare, but I agree with Pierre: even with injuries, United will still field a pretty good XI. And they’ll be at home, and they’ll be up for it. And while results have people questioning Solskjaer, United are well-organized and play in smart attacking patterns. No one should think of tonight as an easy game. However, if Emery gets his selection right — no Xhaka, no AMN, no Ozil, no Mustafi — we should get a result.

  58. Skinnywill

    They made a very good point on the Arsenal Vision Podcast over the weekend in that with 2 full backs that we don’t trust to defend the midfielders have been pulled wide to cover their deficiencies leaving Xhaka and the 2 centre halves exposed. Obviously better players than Xhaka, Sokratis and Luis would cope better but I strongly agree with them that the return of Bellerina and the introduction of Tiernay will have a significant impact on our defensive capabilities. My team for tonight would be:

    Maitland- Niles

    In a 5-2-1-2 formation with wingbacks providing the width (i.e. 3-4-1-2 when attacking). I would keep with a back 3 until Bellerin is fit to return.

  59. Bamford10


    “keep with a back 3”

    This implies we’ve been playing with three CBs. Unless I’ve missed something, we haven’t been. And I wouldn’t play AMN tonight unless I had no other choice. Chambers is the better choice, IMO. And stay with a back four.

  60. Champagne charlie


    What does “well organised” mean for you? you claimed Emery’s Arsenal far more organised than Wenger’s.

    Didn’t answer how you arrived at that conclusion though when asked.

  61. Nelson

    If the coaching staff doesn’t play Chambers today, I would be really disappointed. Chambers has so much energy. He can make the team stronger both in defense and attack. I would play him either as RB or DM.

  62. Words on a Blog


    If she, as an eminent social media influencer, likes Xhaka then he must be good.

    I have been duly influenced.


  63. Jamie

    Just read on BBC that City can’t fill their stadium for a Champs League game even though they’re trying to flog their tickets at £20 for adult non-members.

    Small club.

  64. gnarleygeorge9

    Is there any chance of The Arsenal actually doing a smash & grab of 3 points up in manchester? Is it too much to ask, after all these years?

  65. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    My team for what it’s two bob is worth…


    Chambers holding papa tiernay

    Torr xhara

    Pepe callebos Saka

    Pea .

    Don’t think he will trust youth in abundance tonight..

  66. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    I heard a rumour is not only a Bannarama song but also what I have heard..

    Corbyn has had three mini strokes recently. .
    Look at his right eye his glasses have been modified with frost because his right eye has dropped.

    Only what I’ve heard…

  67. Valentin


    Grealish stating that the Emirates Stadium is his favourite stadium.
    Sure that will play well with his Spurs potential suitor.
    Once Villa is relegated and Ceballos sent back to Real Madrid, may be worth make a cheeky bid for him.

  68. Champagne charlie


    If he steps up this season I’d be all over him in the summer, seems like a budget peak wilshere. Much better suited to the PL than Ceballos if performances to date are an accurate reflection.

  69. Marko

    Lyon winless in 7 under Sylvinho and already under pressure. Should be seen as a warning sign for people arguing for an Arteta like appointment.

  70. Guns of Brixton


    Jack Grealish ?? IDK.

    Seems to be a meek signing. A bit like when we said we needed wingers and Fraser of Bournemouth was floated. We need that Pepe level hype sigining.

  71. Ishola70

    lol Grealish another player that is shit off the ball.

    Is it too hard to just want an accomplished player that is good both on and off the ball.

  72. China1

    I don’t support any of the major parties these days

    Boris is only interested in himself though. I am fairly certain fame at any cost is his only persuit. In reality this will mean notoriety.

    The guy wants to go down in history and be remembered and there’s a good chance he will be. He’s an extremely clever guy who has been building up to this moment not through believing in any particular causes, but by being extremely savy when it comes to managing his public image and manouvreing himself into all the right places at the right times.

    He’s not ideological in the slightest, he just wants to be remembered.

    There’s was a great article on sky news about a year ago where the author said they’d been at one of the events he’d been invited to as a speaker a several years back. He arrived an hour late, got the name of the host wrong, was generally disheveled but won the audience over with his typical bojo style

    The same author happened to be at another private event he’d been invited to as a speaker about 2 years later. He said it was play for play exactly the same routine. Arrive an hour late, thank the host with the wrong name. Be disheveled and embarrass himself but win the audience over with bojo humour

    Everything you see of Boris is fake and just a very well rehearsed routine and it’s worked an absolute treat for him. Very very slick guy

  73. Marko

    Yeah I’m more inclined for our next CM signing or two to be of the defensive variety. A proper DM and a replacement for Xhaka please not more of the same.

  74. Danialtos

    Is anyone still laughing at ny Leicester prediction.
    I recall commenting that the Leicester starting 11 [when we played them in April 2019] was better than ours. Their bench was also better than ours then.
    I bet it doesn’t raise eyebrows now when paid commentators say the same things- Leicester are a credible candidate for top-4. They are as good as Arsenal and Spurs. They are better than Chelsea and United

    Dissenter indeed I even recall myself saying this same very things only to be met with ridicule on here…am not sure when it was but I think it is the time they beat us…they have a completely balanced side and it won’t surprise me if they finish in the four

  75. Champagne charlie

    “They are as good as Arsenal and Spurs. They are better than Chelsea and United“

    On the strength of what? Because if it’s this season so far then I assume West Ham are candidates too.

  76. Danialtos

    You were taken down by Emery badly, now you are asking if we can prove something unprovable as a way to prove you are rational.

    Pedro this is embarrassing coming from you,how was he taken down by Emery unless I am missing something here…he never said Emery was coming to win the treble or something,unlike you who are basing your entire argument on probables.I mean,you said it yourself up there .”if we can prove something unprovable”..well there is your answer you can’t prove that arteta was going to play sexy football..Vincent Kompany(I know different comparison),for example,stink the place out at anderlecht before stepping down.

  77. Jamie

    I think what people are laughing at is thinking any club other than City and Liverpool have top 4 sewn up after 7 league games..

    Kind of like suggesting a tennis player in the Wimbledon Final should retire from the game at the start of the 2nd set (of 5, which went to a 12-12 tiebreak).

    I’d hold fire until March before talking up Leicester as a genuine top 4 contender.

  78. Danialtos

    Someone can have elite ideas without yet implementing them as “proof” of said ideas. It’s literally the definition of an idea. You’re asking Pedro to prove his own belief because you discount everything associated to potential and live in the ‘he hasn’t done it yet’ realm. Others are more open minded and recognised the unique opportunity that moment presented. Quite something that approaching 18 months of pure wank and you’re still so defiant at the mere possibilities of another person in charge way back when. Suggest you take a pointed hat and find a corner of a room, and no, its not your birthday

    Champagne this is not the point rather the fact Pedro has been banging the Arteta drum based on his supposed ‘ideas’ and the well tired line of ‘contacts in the game’..I mean I am a film maker and I have literally seen some of the best ideas except when they are put into practice they are shit.We can say what we want on Emery,he may be absolute shite as people claim here but at least he has a managerial CV…Arteta has f*ck all and it’s not like he is even an Arsenal legend,like say,Vieira…on second thought why aren’t we banging the viera drum as much as Arteta?

  79. UTarse

    What’s with all the Leicester love in ffs ?? It’s still September and some posters are swinging their dicks like they’re mystic meg authorities on who’s going to finish where come end of the season ?

    “I was right” syndrome reigns on le grove

  80. Danialtos

    Since we are going to down the route of deciding coaches are good based on their sitting arrangements,how about we appoint Mike Phelan,who sat beside the greatest manager in the world for like 5 years..

  81. Receding Hairline

    Beating a Newcastle tam one man down for the whole of the second half seems to be the stuff of champions on here. We have fallen as a fan base we now find even the most basic of things praise worthy

  82. Danialtos

    Now quotes aren’t enough? This feels a familiar path. You argue for the sake of it.

    Pedro apparently Emery fooled the whole board by use of a PowerPoint presentation with empty words.How sure are we that Arteta is not the same?…I mean didn’t Henry say something bordering on the same entertaining football at Monaco?How did it end?

  83. Graham62


    Yeh, it’s a shame that things have come to this.

    I suppose a decade of false dawns and broken promises has affected us all.

    It doesn’t take an Einstein though to understand that Leicester will be a major contender for top 4.

  84. Danialtos

    Definition of insanity repeating the same thing and expect a different result.Why do people keep trying to reason with Marko.
    He does not believe in coaching. It is always the player’s fault.
    He does not believe in the concept of potential. You can can only know if somebody will fullfil their potential after you have given an opportunity to do so. Until then you cannot prove it one way or another.He only believe in things that have been, so success or failure can be proven. Black or white. No shade of grey with multiple state.Imagine if Marko has been in charge of validating the quantum Mechanics theory.Schrödinger: this is an experiment about a cat whose life depend on an atom entanglement. And therefore does not have a state until it is observed.Marko: so before we observe the cat is dead or alive?Schrödinger: the cat is both.Marko: open the box and you will knowSchrödinger: that is the point. Until you open the box the cat is both alive and dead.Marko: so the cat is dead…

    Valentin,Marko is simply asking what are we basing Artetayalleged managerial sauce on and am seeing alot of back and forth but surprisingly no one has actually provided’s only probabilities and hypotheticals…which brings me to the point,if this is how we are choosing our manager,why am I not seeing Mike Phelan in the discussion?

  85. Champagne charlie


    I think it’s you missing the point here, Arteta is touted as potential. Having a belief in that can be disagreeable as you like, but 18 months later into Emery’s tenure and there’s absolutely no high ground for someone to deride that belief given what the alternative has unearthed.

    So Pedro can believe that Arteta would’ve brought sexy football and sauce, there’s no counter to the point outside of conjecture. How successful he would’ve been implementing it all has never been claimed by anyone.

    “We can say what we want on Emery,he may be absolute shite as people claim here but at least he has a managerial CV”

    I fail to see how that’s a comforting element whatsoever when prefaced with “he may be absolute shite”.

  86. Skinnywill


    I meant keep a back 3 based on my line-up going forward, this is on the assumption that Xhaka is going to continue to start.

    If we are not going to go back 3 then Torreira has to come in for Xhaka, Chambers moves across to RB and I would go for Smith-Rowe (if fit) ahead of Saka or Nelson for the left of the 4-2-3-1

  87. Danialtos

    DaniI think it’s you missing the point here, Arteta is touted as potential. Having a belief in that can be disagreeable as you like, but 18 months later into Emery’s tenure and there’s absolutely no high ground for someone to deride that belief given what the alternative has unearthed. So Pedro can believe that Arteta would’ve brought sexy football and sauce, there’s no counter to the point outside of conjecture. How successful he would’ve been implementing it all has never been claimed by anyone. “We can say what we want on Emery,he may be absolute shite as people claim here but at least he has a managerial CV”I fail to see how that’s a comforting element whatsoever when prefaced with “he may be absolute shite”.

    Pedro on Arteta,he usually says it with an absolute certainity that Arteta will be an elite manager and the when asked to prove what these assumptions are based on,you areet with snobbish answers like “I know people in the game” …this a football blog ffs,I have seen many people here make statements and then they are asked to prove them…you have done this yourself onany occasions and so far we have not seen the evidence that Arteta can walk into the emirates’ tomorrow and have us play champagne football none whatsoever,not an iota.Now,on the contrary me and many others here have said that Arteta may/may not actually turn out to be a good coach in future..but it’s the way guys just come here and say that if Arteta was Arsenal manager today we would be playing elite football,based on being a pep guardiola assistant…

  88. Valentin


    “why am I not seeing Mike Phelan in the discussion?”

    Mike tried his hand at managing and it was clear he was bad at it. Great number 2, but shit manager. Same with Brian Kidd.
    That’s s why Mike Phelan is not talked about manager any more.

    Why was Lampard, Gerard or anybody for that matter given a manager role the first time?
    On potential. Why is this so difficult to understand?

  89. Pierre

    “They made a very good point on the Arsenal Vision Podcast over the weekend in that with 2 full backs that we don’t trust to defend the midfielders have been pulled wide to cover their deficiencies leaving Xhaka and the 2 centre halves exposed.”

    It’s a futile point ..

    I hope they went on to question our manager playing a midfield diamond formation which gives those full backs that we don’t trust…..


    Now that would have been a good point to make instead of them making excuses for why our midfield is not giving the defence protection.