by .

The big one is tomorrow. Arteta rolled the entire season on Europa League. He has to deliver.

My big fear?

Galaxy brain.

There are so many temptations and potential traps that could down us.

Do you bring David ‘BIG GAME’ Luiz back in the mixer?

Does Auba start?

Does he risk Tierney or Lacazette despite them having no game time?

Internet people are saying we should roll all the dice. For me, that’s dim thinking. Nothing wrecks an Arsenal plan worse than an early smack in the face. Losing players that are important to the system isn’t good for the system. Also, losing players for the final would also be disastrous.

I’d prefer to lessen the risk by playing fit players who want to perform.

The biggest galaxy brain worry is rolling out a Villareal tactical plan built for Manchester City level players. We’re not there yet. 20-year-olds in the false 9 role is not going to work tomorrow. We need to have a simple plan every single player can follow. That means the right players in the right positions. We have enough fitness to deliver on that vision.

Auba is fit, he wants to lead, he’ll have horrendous memories of his miss last year, that desire to prove the world wrong will be key. That feels like a huge boost.

Martinelli was on fire at the weekend, he’s in form, he should land a starting role.

Odegaard created 5 chances against Newcastle, if you’re playing Auba, you need him on the pitch.

Then it’s tough because you have Lacazette, Saka, and Pepe pushing for starts.

We need to win 1-0. Simple as that. Then we’re through. I would prefer destruction. I’m not sure we’ll get that, but we certainly did away for Slavia Prague.

If we win, Arteta has made a second final in two of the toughest ever seasons. That’s good work. He’ll still need to win the final, but it certainly takes the edge off the league season.

I don’t even want to contemplate a loss.

Whatever the result, there’s still a lot of introspection about this season to be had. It’s not been good enough. A trophy won’t change that.

… but, it’ll go a long way. It’s the memory zapper in MIB. We all need a memory zapper for this season.

Fingers crossed Arteta has something special lined up.


Jump to comment form ↓

  1. Swkmoon

    Stop denigrating the FA cup. It’s pathetic and shows a lack of understanding of the English game.

  2. Samesong

    No to Brendan Rodgers or Benitez. Thats 5th place at best.

    Guns that’s not the right attitude. These are premier league experienced managers. So we hire like an Allegri or someone form abroad who has never managed in the premier league where is that going to get us.

    We are not winning the league anytime soon but at least with Rodgers he will get us playing good football and have the youngsters playing with confidence.

  3. Ishola70

    I know the English game and these old uns on here should feel a little silly as they were around when the FA Cup was absolutely golden to win. It was pinnacle.

    No more.

  4. Pierre

    “Stop denigrating the FA cup. It’s pathetic and shows a lack of understanding of the English game.”

    Absolutely, but it is ishola , one wouldn’t expect anything different from him.

  5. Pierre

    The sooner the club rids itself of the entitled fans, the better.

    There may be a silver cloud to this season in that the plastic fans may take their “support” elsewhere

  6. Leedsgunner

    We are all disappointed this morning but I for one am very pleased we won the FA Cup last year.

    The FA Cup just proved what we all know now, Arteta is a flash in the pan manager… he just isn’t as good as he thinks he is.

  7. Ishola70

    They will keep the deluded fans though won’t they Pierre.

    You thought Arteta was a good manager because he bagged one FA Cup.

    More fool you.

  8. Pierre

    As a supporter, why would you not feel pleased and proud that the club you support have won a trophy.

    Believe it or not, winning and competing for trophies should be the highlight for a football fan.

    For you , it seems to only bring yourself and you get way more enjoyment from a defeat like last night.

  9. Pierre

    “You thought Arteta was a good manager because he bagged one FA Cup.”

    More bullshit.

    Anyone who has read my posts over the last 12 months will tell you different , though I will always give credit where it’s due if deserved.

  10. andy1886

    Swkmoon/ES – I’m not exactly sure how ‘ex-pros’ were qualified to judge MA given that the vast majority of them would probably never have seen him coach in their lives. It probably all comes from either Pep’s gossip or a ‘feeling’ that he had what it took to be a manager at some point. And of course some of them would have been his mates. As for ‘pundits’ most of them struggle to even understand the laws of the game or that it isn’t still 1986.

    Fact is there was no evidence at all to suggest he’d do well, as I’ve said before the environment at City is nothing like that at Arsenal. This appointment was based on nothing more than hope and a few nice words from Pep and his pals.

  11. Ishola70


    All cup wins should be enjoyed but they should also be weighed up in relation to how they are rated in today’s football world.

    The FA Cup at the top end of football is no longer the pinnacle trophy.

    There are only two pinnacle trophies at the real top end of football in relation to Engish clubs these being the EPL title and the CL.

    In bygone days the English League title and Cup double was seen as absolutely golden to win. On par with the European Cup. No longer.

  12. Ishola70


    “This appointment was based on nothing more than hope and a few nice words from Pep and his pals.”

    I thought it was also based on him being an ex Arsenal player under Wenger.

    We heard terms like “inhouse” and that Arteta would know the club already having played there and this would be to his advantage.

  13. Pierre

    “In bygone days the English League title and Cup double was seen as absolutely golden to win. On par with the European Cup. No longer.”

    A typical comment from an Arsenal entitled fan.

    Put it this way , Liverpool have won 5 european cups and one double …

    Man city and Chelsea have only won one double despite all their wealth.
    Arsenal are top of the pile with 3 ( with United ) and should be regarded a s a remarkable achievement for the club when you take into consideration that only 6 clubs have managed to do the double in the last century and this century.
    Liverpool one
    Tottenham one.

  14. Ishola70


    The paying public are not silly.

    That’s why you see overall declining attandances for FA Cup ties compared to when the FA Cup was in it’s prime.

    There were many cases in the past where the biggest attendance of the season for a club would be an FA Cup tie.

    No longer.

    The paying public know Pierre.

  15. Ps

    Re Grham Potter

    Weren’t Brighton fans knocking him earlier in the season?

    Not sure when their criticism of him stopped, or ws not reported by the media

  16. andy1886

    Ishola, fair comment, although I would have thought that a complete change would have been a better option, someone not contaminated with the poison that has been destroying the club from the inside for years.

  17. Valentin

    Majestic Gooner,

    I am sorry, but to pretend that we declined from 2005 is deluded to the extreme. We went to a Champion’s League final in 2006 and we had NEVER reached a Champion’s League final beforehand! How did we decline by getting better result in the European competition?

    Regarding the so called decline, if you were a real fan, you would know that that Arsenal was supposed to generate £20 millions per year in players sale every year for the first 10 years of the Emirates move. So yes, we had to sell players. However we were still able to buy proper players. RvP, Cesc …

    The real issue came to a head in 2014, when by then we had money but nobody to make deals. Gazidis was never able to fullfil David Dein’s role. He was a clueless negotiator who thought he was smarter than he really was.

  18. Ishola70


    “although I would have thought that a complete change would have been a better option”


    Said on here a few times now we shouldn’t have run away from the first sign of trouble when trying to find a new path under Wenger. Appoint the next “outsider”

    But we did just that. We ran away. We went “inhouse”.

    And we see the result.

  19. Pierre

    “The FA Cup at the top end of football is no longer the pinnacle trophy.There are only two pinnacle trophies at the real top end of football in relation to Engish clubs these being the EPL title and the CL.”

    Just to educate you, the league title and the European Cup were and always will be the pinnacle trophies..

    The fa Cup was massive in this country because it was the only domestic game that was shown live on TV..

    Not even semi finals or league title deciders were shown live back in the day.

  20. bennydevito

    Black SnakeMay 7, 2021    10:37:14

    Having listened to the podcast, ive gotta say fair play to Pedro. He held his hands up about Arteta and fair play to him, he doesn’t deserve loads of shit as he does write a good blog


    Agreed 100%. Let’s keep it respectful with Pedro, he gives us great content and a great platform for free that he pays for. Pedro got it wrong but at the time we all wanted Emery gone no? It was dreadful. Let’s not rewrite history, pining for Emery or turning this into a Emery was better than Arteta debate is just stupid, futile and counter productive.

    And give it a rest about Rafa fucking Benitez ffs.

    I’d be happy to get a proper dof in place, get rid of all the shit, recall the frozen out loanees and give Arteta a chance back as the coach, but that ship has probably sailed.

    I think Conte is a great shout or Allegri who I wanted to replace Wenger. But if we want to go down the forward thinking sauce route what about getting in the Ajax manager with Overmars as dof and Bergkamp as a coach. Although Bergkamp fell out with the Ajax hierarchy and got sacked so it might not work with Overmars.

    Pedro’s going to be feeling all over the place today but he’s owned it on Twitter so let’s not be too hard on him.

  21. Pierre

    Arsenal’s victory in the fairs Cup was not shown live but the European Cup was always shown live ….in my lifetime anyway..

    I can always remember watching celtic beat Milan in Lisbon in 1967 and then united beat benfica at Wembley.

  22. Ishola70


    I’m talking about in relation to English fans.

    When the FA Cup was in it’s prime winning it was just as big a thing as winning the European Cup. It had the same glory for the fans.

    Attendances for FA Cup ties were just as big as for European ties.

    This is no longer the case.

    There is a reason Pierre why FA Cup attendances overall have seriously declined from the past. But of course this isn’t palatable to you or fits your narrative.

  23. Valentin

    I like Graham Potter, but I think that he has reached his ceiling, the same way Roberto Martinez did at Wigan. They can make their play attractive football, but they can’t make them better defensively.
    Also even with that attractive football, they don’t score that many goals.
    All that pretty approach can’t hide the fact that their inability to score goals combined with the inability to stop the opposition scoring meant that their league club results was always going to be restricted to the second half of the table.

    Graham potter football philosophy need better players to be successful, but then will he be able players with bigger ego? Not necessarily his fault, but I am not sure that he has the charisma, aura to shut down Aubameyang, Lacazette, David Luiz.

  24. Tom

    “Winning any major trophy is impressive in England, especially if you have 2 beat what are now the 2 best teams in Europe to win it…..“

    Pierre, except Arsenal didn’t beat two best teams in Europe when they won it did they.
    City finished the league 18 points off Liverpool and got knocked out of the CL in quarterfinals by the 7th place finishers in France ( that’s the cup competition in a nutshell for you), while there was talk of Guardiola losing interest and walking away.

    And Chelsea finished the league on puny 66 points in fourth by comparison to Liverpool’s 99.
    and got destroyed by Bayern 7:1 on aggregate in last 16, while coached by Lampard who is now considered a flop.

  25. andy1886

    Val, not sure where you got the idea that we had to generate £20m by player sales for the first ten years of the Emirates, certainly not something that the accounts suggest at all. Repayments and interest cost at their highest less than £30m yet we increased match day revenue by £50m. That’s without considering increased TV and sponsorship revenues (including stadium naming rights). We built up that cash reserve during those years, we didn’t suddenly find £100m plus behind the sofa one day.

    The biggest drain on our resources was the stupid sums we paid to average players. Nik B on £52k pw, Chamakh on £80k pw, Gallas on £100k+ pw. And that’s when these were huge salaries.

  26. Valentin

    Emery was an outsider and he failed.
    Arteta was an insider and he failed even worse.
    The issue was never a choice between outsider or in house. It was about competent manager who can fit within the Arsenal financial constraints and playing style legacy.

    Competent manager who can play attractive successful football do exist, but we also need to put the right people around them to help them concentrate on their job: coaching, not recruiting, meddling with the academy. Sacking the scouting department department resulted in Arteta being given too much power. Emi should never have been allowed to leave. David Luiz should not have been renewed. Arsenal should never have touched Willian at the price and length of contract.

  27. Samesong

    The fa Cup was massive in this country because it was the only domestic game that was shown live on TV..

    Pierre I agree with almost everything you said. But where the Fa cup lost its shine was having semi finals at Wembley to come back to play at Wembley again for the final.

    Used to love a semi final at Villa Park.

    I see Wembley from my house everyday.

  28. andy1886

    Potter’s Brighton have only conceded 2 more goals than Arsenal with our famously tight defence (claimed).

    Where they struggle is they don’t have even an average striker. Their XG is far above their actual goals scored. If they actually hit their XG they would be in the top half of the table.

    Also worth remembering that the most successful post war managers at Arsenal were Bertie Mee (former physiotherapist), George Graham (recruited from Millwall) and of course Arsene who was working in Japan with Nagoya Grampus Eight.

  29. Elmo

    I think the true disastrous post-Wenger appointment was Don Raul as sporting director.

    Clearly he was culturally a completely inappropriate fit for Arsenal (he was a wide-boy, dark arts, contacts guy who knew nothing but late era Barca-style splashing huge wads of cash to multiple shady stakeholders to force through any deal).

    The sporting director was supposed to be the solid rock in a changing environment. Had we appointed an appropriate and competent person with a long term view (perhaps like a Rangnick), the two failed managers would have been bad, but nowhere near the need for complete clear-outs / rebuilds that we’re seeing now.

    We all called for a ‘new structure’ when Wenger was removed. It’s sad that 3 seasons later we’re once again arguing for the same thing. It just proves that Gazidis didn’t understand the culture of the club, and that he didn’t ‘know football’ in choosing a personality like Sanllehi. The club wasted its significant cash reserves and our best chance at a bright new dawn in the last 3 years. Now we have to take another shot at it from a much weaker and more precarious position.

  30. Ishola70


    What we are on about when we talk about insider or outsider is finding a new path away from Wenger’s skirt tails.

    When Arteta was appointed we heard terms like “The Arsenal way” which really means as we all know the Wenger way.

  31. Valentin


    That was some of the covenants for the loans.
    Another covenant was that we had to high reserve. The last one was one of the reason the Kroenke lend Arsenal money to early terminate the previous loan despite the extortionate penalty fee £40 millions.
    The day after the invincibles, Arsene went to the board hoping to get a budget increase following his extrordinary achievement, he was told that his budget was cancelled. He only had £200,000 to spend to improve on the invincibles! If he wanted money he had to raise by himself, but knowing that £20 millions from his initial budget was taken for the repayment.
    Then 2008 and the financial crisis, just when we thought that the property boom will allow us to benefit and repay the loans without touching the football budget.
    Read the financial behind the scene of Arsenal, it is fascinating. Arsenal financial situation was a lot more precarious than the board let known to casual fans. Until 2013 there was no money to spend.

  32. Valentin


    That’s my point. Emery was selected because he had nothing in common with Wenger philosophy and he failed. He was hired as aheadcoach and not a manager. Gazidis wanted a clean break from Wenger in hiring a pragmatist.

    Arteta was chosen because of his link with Wenger, but more importantly to his link to the so called best coach in the world Pep Guardiola), and he failed.

    So the link to Wenger is not a valid accusation. they both failed, because they were both the wrong men for Arsenal.

  33. Ishola70


    We need to move away from Wenger and a new path.

    We would not have touched Arteta if he had only been an assistant coach at Man City but had no link with Arsenal or Wenger. We would not have gone near him.

  34. Elmo

    Surely the killer blow to the FA Cup was United pulling out on grounds that they had better things to do in 99/00. When the dominant team in the land openly stated it was an expendable competition, its fate as a top tier trophy was sealed.

    The new Wembley wasn’t opened until 2007, with the agreement on staging SFs, which devalued the competition further.

  35. Gonsterous


    Where does this blog go is more appropriate.
    Where does pedro go from here? Continuously backing the wrong people, though we still love you pedders.

  36. Tom

    “We beat Chelsea because we were the better team and had more attempts at goal , so hardly backs to the wall stuff.Probably better to get your facts right before spouting off.“

    I was as elated as you were , Pierre, when we won it but we must’ve watched two different games you and I.

    The only real goal threat Arsenal created was the penalty decision given and Auba’s deadly finish for the second goal.
    Can’t remember anything else.
    It wasn’t exactly backs to wall but Chelsea were better and very unlucky with ref decisions.

  37. Tom

    Pepe’s finish was superb but off sides make it null and void.
    We had nothing else.
    No blue tint here just an honest assessment you seem to be freshly out of.

  38. Dissenter

    When it rains, it pours

    Guendouzi can’t be sold this summer before his contract runs out in 2022
    He’s gotten a metatarsal fracture

  39. Mr Serge

    Really surprised Allegri is favourite amongst the bookies with Rodgers second potter is about 7 th Bielsa not even in the betting