by .

Welcome to Saturday; let’s talk about some things.

I do find it quite incredible that there is a certain section of the fanbase that think refereeing decisions aren’t of interest and shouldn’t be part of the conversation.

The referee that sent off Rob Holding for a shoulder barge, let Harry Kane get away with this.

Does that challenge look like Harry Kane playing the dark-arts with ninja like subtlety? I don’t think so.

Simple fact with referees this season is that shocking decisions go against us more often than they do other teams. Some call it a conspiracy theory chatter, I’d say just look at how we’ve been treated, look at the mad decisions that have gone against us, and tell me how 1 soft penalty against United makes it better?

The reffing has been so bad for us this season we’ve actually had moments when the refs have invented new ways to fuck us… remember Martinelli getting two yellows in the same passage of play? How about Tomi getting his face stamped on with no action? How about Palace booting Saka in the air? How about the Xhaka sending off? The list goes on. We are treated differently.

If Rob Holding is sent off for standing his ground on 26 minutes, then Son should be sent off for throwing an elbow. The main difference seems to be that Bob Holding doesn’t scream like he’s been hit with a wet towel in the snow.

Paul Tierney had to really want to ruin that game to do what he did and the only people who think differently on that seem to have a history of wanting to see this Arsenal team fail this season. Embarrassing.

Ok, I’m done moaning.

Let’s take a moment to accept where we are right now: IN CONTROL OF TOP 4.

My view is that if we beat Newcastle, Champions League is ours.

The Geordies are THE banana skin game.

Eddie Howe will ask questions of us.

We have to treat this like our Cup Final.

They are no mugs in 2022. Below is the half-season table. It looks pretty close to what we did last season.

The positives we can take from this is their 3 tough games against Liverpool, Spurs and City have seen them beaten. They conceded 10 between Spurs and City alone.

The negative is this is their last home game of the season, it’ll be under the floodlights, their players will want to sign off in style, they have nothing to play for, so they’ll fly into us to put on a show.

The hope is that the news from the medical team is positive. Our players have been quite good at tapping themselves out early this season. Ben White sat on the bench at Spurs which was smart. Gabriel is quite robust, hopefully he took himself off the same way Bukayo did in the game prior. Having actual centre backs feels like an important part of the day… The thought of Tomiyasu and Big Mo in the middle with Lord Of Chaos starting fires on the left makes feel a little queezy I have to say.

The other worry I have is around fatigue. Saka looked blitzed the other night. A few of our players looked tired. 10 men for 65 minutes isn’t ideal. If we go to Newcastle tired, they’ll use their freshness to rattle into us. All the great managers say tiredness is part of the job, our young men need to find their inner Red Bull, crack it open, and let the wings carry them through the 90.

Ok, I apologise for that last line. Not my best.

If we play with the mindset we started the Spurs game with; we’ll be in good shape come the end of the 90. The absolute key is to not let the moment get to us, like it did Rob Holding. We need to control our emotions and manage the moments. Make it to half time without conceding and we’ll be in a solid spot to take the game from there. Arsenal away fans will be huge, I just hope they are prepared to suffer for a chunk of the game.

My pragmatic view of Top 4 is that if we can’t be Newcastle, we just weren’t ready to take the club to the Champions League this season.

If that happens, there will be recriminations with weirdo fans that have been gagging for a bit of bad news, but the reality is, we are at the start of this project and we know VERY clearly what we have to do to get better.

I thought this comment from Pep was really good as some preparation if things don’t go well.

‘Character’ and ‘bottle job’ comments at these players cannot be sitting in people’s drafts. The Premier League is the highest standard of football on the planet. What this squad of players has done this season has been exceptional. We can still finish with 72 points, with an average age of 23 years old. That is a marvel. If we make Champions League, it is a huge overachievement, if we don’t make it, it’s just a learning XP moment for a young squad of players with an outrageously high ceiling.

Being in control at this moment shows character, delivering on Monday merely demonstrates we got it right on the day, no broad-brush slander is going to land however things go.

I’m feeling bullish about the game. If we can put out a well-balanced side and the team can channel their grievances in a productive manner, we’ll exit with a win.

If we exit with a win, then we have to beat an Everton that will be safe, and properly on the beach.

Let’s see what the boys have got. We’ll be doing a BEFORE THE WHISTLE tomorrow after the Spurs win against Burnley. So be sure to tune in… but before, check out the Spurs post-game analysis.

Give us a 5* rating as well. x

509 Responses to “GEORDIE CUP FINAL”

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  1. Gonsterous

    Will city bottle the league? I think not. They will win the next game and lift the title.

    Will arsenal bottle 4th? Depends on the Newcastle game. We win that and we have the momentum to win against everton. Spurs will win against Norwich so its all on us.

  2. China1

    As much as I don’t want liverpool to win the quintuple, I’d rather they won the league than city and I’d always normally rather an English team win the CL than a foreign team

    CL final I think is 50/50. Pool are better but it’s Real Madrid and it’s the CL so anything can happen

    In the league I assume city will win but how glorious would it be to see them fail and win nothing considering how financially doped they are. The bottle job jibes would be next level

  3. China1

    My exceptions for wanting an English team to win the CL are Chelsea and Spurs tho

    Chelsea because they’re classless chavs and Spurs because they’re mouth breathing bottom feeders

  4. Bob N16

    Tony, you’re appear to be using me for target practice.

    I haven’t ‘backed Pedro’ for many months.
    This idea that I’m making ‘excuses for Arteta’- seems to be the form of attack at the moment. Like many on here who seem to get so involved in the sectarianism, you have your position and try to squeeze virtually any situation into a black and white, binary world.

    For example, I merely agree with the idea that the PGMOL is seriously flawed and you intimate that I am defending Arteta by making excuses. I felt that it was a penalty on Thursday and that Holding deserved to be booked twice but I also feel that Arsenal have on balance, not had a fair rub of the green when it comes to officialdom. I’ m not saying that other clubs haven’t suffered as well but I am saying that we deserve better officiating. You turn that into me defending Arteta.

    You appear triggered by someone who comes up with ‘excuses’ , replace the word excuses with ‘reasoning ‘and consider how that sits.

    Arteta and Arsenal are not interchangeable. I am an Arsenal fan not an Arteta fan. He has qualities and also failings. I personally don’t see it as 4th as success and 5th as failure for either Arsenal or Arteta. I’d naturally be much happier if we won our last two games though.

    Tony, discuss with Junior if you will and respond if you like. I slightly worry that I might be becoming your ‘ES’ punch bag substitute. I hope I don’t have to scroll down your posts.

  5. Nelson

    If both White and Gabriel are out, I’ll play the following lineup

    Cedric, Tomiyasu, Xhaka, Tavares
    Ødegaard, …………………….Smith Rowe
    Saka, …………….Eddie,……………… Martinelli

    I still think that we didn’t sign anyone in the Jan. TW was a very bad move. It is like buying insurance.

  6. Markymark

    Robert Pires – most people in this site know that Arteta has faults and will overcome some and fail with others. He won’t get 7-8 years like Wengo to fail to sort them though, let’s all be clear about that.
    The posters who are being singled out are super whiny types who if you were crazy you’d invite to your birthday only to find they’d dumped on your birthday cake whilst blaming you for the disaster.
    Generally attacking an Arteta / Arsenal fancentric site is just odd and out of kilter. Most of the attacks are happening prior to actual games where we could make a difference. If we beat Newcastle and Everton where do the super cynic troll boys go? The answer is then plain . Copious attacks on Arteta’s perceived ability to challenge in the Champions league . It’ll have to be won first time around for some on this site to even give him a 50-50 support amongst those lot. The last bastion of the Wenger boys will be attacking Arteta for something their Grand Master was unable to achieve.

  7. Positive pete

    Not one of the non Arsenal pundits have given us a chance of a win tonight.All gagging for Arsenal to drop points O Hara,Shearer,Sutton,Owen,lawrenson,Neville,the whole poxy lot of em.Boy oh boy I’d love it,absolutely love it to win tonight & have em choke on their bile.

  8. Samesong

    Positive pete

    Who cares what they think? Ex Spurs, Ex Newcastle, Ex Blackburn and Liverpool mostly northerners.

  9. DivineSherlock

    Its the last away game of the season , one mostrous performance is all we need . Lets go boys !

  10. Mr Serge

    bob16 i also get treated like that as well called an Arteta fan not an Arsenal fan too many trolls on here i am just going to ignore them from now on

  11. Habesha Gooner

    I am very nervous about tonight. No defenders is going to be tough. We are going to struggle defensively. But our attack needs to do the job. I have a feeling we may need to start ESR. And Eddie needs to show the hunger and quality he has shown over the past few games.

  12. The Bard

    Bobn16 Posters get stuck in binary position. Its the preferred way of communicating these days. Its black or white and nothing in-between.

  13. Mr Serge

    Habesha GoonerMay 16, 2022 09:57:33
    I am very nervous about tonight. No defenders is going to be tough. We are going to struggle defensively. But our attack needs to do the job. I have a feeling we may need to start ESR. And Eddie needs to show the hunger and quality he has shown over the past few games.

    same these last 2 weeks have been stressfull

  14. Terraloon

    The Bard

    Bobn16 Posters get stuck in binary position. Its the preferred way of communicating these days. Its black or white and nothing in-between.

    Add to it they can never accept that there is another point of view

  15. Pierre

    “most people in this site know that Arteta has faults and will overcome some and fail with others. He won’t get 7-8 years like Wengo to fail to sort them though, let’s all be clear about that.”

    The difference is , what was regarded as failure by wenger during that so called decade of failure , will now be regarded as success by Arteta.

    Can Arteta keep Arsenal in the top 4 year on year whilst competing in the champions league and winning domestic trophies as wenger did..

    If Arteta does manage to emulate Wenger’s supposed years of failure I’m sure Arsenal fans will be reasonably satisfied , though i doubt he will emulate Wenger’s last decade..

  16. Markymark

    Pierre – Wenger did it largely without City Oil money and Chelsea Russian blood money. As soon as Chelsea money filtered through we dropped . As soon as City Money came in . We were stuffed.
    Arteta is fighting in this world of 6 powers (including UTD) not the previous duopoly that Wenger had his successful period in.
    Wengers last great opportunity when Leicester won the title and Chelsea / City / UTD we’re going through change. Wenger blew it

  17. Mr Serge

    Habesha GoonerMay 16, 2022 10:54:31
    Mr Serge
    Predictions? I think we will win just about. It will be tight though.

    2 nil to us tonight I think they will be on the beach well I hope anyway

  18. NORG


    AFC still have one of the richest owners in the Premier League. Now that Chelsea is in the process of changing hands only City and Newcastle have owners with bottomless pockets. The Liverpool owner is relatively poor compared with Stan but Fenway have a more ‘hands on’ approach and are hungry for continued success. They made sure they employed one of the very best.
    Will Newcastle follow the City route? They employed the manager that Wenger recommended to be his successor.

  19. Samesong

    I think they will be on the beach well I hope anyway

    No don’t think they will. They will want to show their fans that they can beat us especially as we have a few walking wounded players. We should go there with an absolutely ruthless attitude tonight.

  20. Rich

    We look shaky at the back, we haven’t had a clean sheet since Tierney got injured, 8 games, conceding 14

    Expecting a really tough game tonight, we need to get through the first 30 minutes, try and silence the crowd.

    Yesterday the atmosphere in the first 20 minutes in the Spurs was lively, Spurs were dominating, Burnley rode out the initial storm, settled into the game, and were then the better team, which silenced the crowd until the penalty.

    We have to manage the game, the way we’re defending, and with the amount of absentees, think we’ll need more than 1 goal to win it

    We should be able to get at them, but the worrying thing is, they’ll fancy getting at our back line as well.

  21. Jonko

    I hope St Manximan starts. That’d be 10 vs 11 straight away. Absolutely brain dead that guy. Most unintelligent footballer matched closely only by Sterling.

  22. Bob N16

    Jonko, do you think Pepe should get a look in? Obviously just talking about footballing IQ! Walcott deserves an honorary mention too.

    Can’t see us keeping a cleanshet, probably need to score three and keep the Saudi bar codes to two! Need Saka back on form.

  23. Mysticleaves

    Always wanted to correct this so here goes….players that are 30, 31, 32 are on the right side of 30. “The wrong side of 30” (as is used to describe players in their early 30s) is from 35 to 39 years old.

    Thanks 😊

  24. Jonko

    At least Pepe and Walcott look up from time to time to find a teammate. I won’t be surprised if one day we see St Maximan huffing and puffing and then scoring in his own net…and celebrating too (with his head still down).

  25. China1

    Oh we are absolutely not bagging on Newcastle players before the game

    Every time we do this said player scores and fucks us

    I’m not taking any part in that today

  26. China1

    Walcott was jokes man. He scored a lot tho tbf

    But his gorm moments were hilarious in hindsight. Who can forget him being set free against city and he jumped over the ball and ran away 😂😂😂😂😂😂

  27. Spanishdave

    We have blown our chance to get 4th.
    We had games in hand over spurs and have lost four of our last seven games.
    Arteta hasn’t a clue how to set up our defence.
    Our squad has too many average players and we fail to show up when it matters.

  28. China1

    Apparently bellerin cried after his last betis game and the players all want him to stay with them

    Please put 8+ m on the table and have him. Fine with me I forgot he even played for us

  29. Rich

    Think we’d just be happy to get Bellerin’s wages off the books.

    Any offer above £5mill, and we’d likely take it.

    If he’s still here at the end of August, we risk paying him until June, and he’ll leave for free anyway.

    We’ve got a few players in this situation, Fiorentina trying to lowball us on the €15 million option on Torreira, after they’ve just got a giant fee for Vlahovic thanks In part to us

  30. James

    I’m really nervous about this evenings game. There’s a lot of pressure and we have a lot of 1st teamers out injured, does not feel ideal to me at all!!!

    Win tonight and I think we’ll beat Everton.

    Draw or lose and it’s a very deflating end to a season which promised so much.

    Overall I’m a really proud gooner and impressed at what’s been achieved with a small squad of young talented players and no recognised striker


  31. Mysticleaves

    Absolutely no need for Bellerin right now as Cedric is doing a good job as cover. We might as well give him to Betis on a free. We are masters in that already

  32. Samesong

    Arteta (if 5th place still constitutes progress even if Arsenal miss on top 4) “No, we want to be playing in the Champions League. We’ve come so far, it’s in our hands and we want to now capitalise on that, and the excitement and the opportunities there.

  33. Danny

    Hara,Shearer,Sutton,Owen,lawrenson,Neville,the whole poxy lot of em.
    This has actually made me optimistic, just like back in ’89.
    Newcastle players don’t give a shit, they’ve nothing to play for and they’re crap anyway.

  34. Mysticleaves

    Same song

    I call bullshit. The owners were thick enough to give him a new contract knowing fully well 4th wasn’t secured. That gives a good indication of what they think progress is and that’s what matters most. Arteta himself accepted the offer when he was sure 5th was in the bag but top 4 wasn’t. That’s what gives a good indicator of what constitutes success/progress for Arteta this season too.

  35. Greg

    Arteta needs to lean in on the spite angle. Win tonight to silence all the arseholes with opinions, to right all the injustices forced upon us, to shut up Conte and banish him to whining about the Europa League and being too poor to afford the players he wants, to ensure Harry Kane never wins anything. Simple message then: how great will it feel to finish 4th? how disappointing will it feel to lose out to Spurs?

  36. China1

    I’m kinda glad (in a sad way) that the game is too late for me tonight. I’m nervous as hell. I just want a result, don’t care one bit how we get it

  37. Nigel Tufnel


    I have the same feeling overall lately. This season somehow seems much more important to me than any in a long time, like 10 years you said.

    I think it’s because I really see a team that can grow into something. Never felt that during the latter Wenger years. We were just holding on, even though I liked our players.

    I never saw a plan or anything hopeful in the team after Wenger either until now. That bloated mediocre squad never had any future, even if they could pull FA cups or Europa.

    Now I care more because of our own kids and the new additions I love, and I see loads of potential and hope. I’d love them to get top 4 as much for the players themselves as my own fandom.

    I think we really could be going somewhere really good, and I always say it’s possible even if we have to do one more Europa season. So I’m not going to lose faith if we’re disappointed, because I think it’s just a 1 season delay at worst. A win today would be very nice though.

  38. Foxy

    Could you image the response if Arteta said in his job interview “I will get you 8th in my first full season but don’t worry it will be 5th in year 3 just trust the process”.

  39. Terraloon


    I hope St Manximan starts. That’d be 10 vs 11 straight away. Absolutely brain dead that guy. Most unintelligent footballer matched closely only by Sterling.

    Sometimes you really do wonder .

    St Maximan causes significant problems going forward because he has so much pace. He chips in with circa the same umber of goals as Martinelli.
    Really dangerous territory to go into the game dismissing any of their players.
    This season Newcastle despite being dog sh** up till Howe was appointed have only lost 3 more games than Arsenal and over the last 15 games they have delivered just 2 points less
    My guess is that they will go 4 3 3 with St maximum, Wood and Wilson up front wood is decent in the air so one or both of White and Gabriel will have their hands full at set pieces.
    Not looking forward to this one

  40. Dissenter

    “I hope St Manximan starts. That’d be 10 vs 11 straight away. Absolutely brain dead that guy. Most unintelligent footballer matched closely only by Sterling.”

    Brain dead comment of the day
    Hoping the Newcastle crowd favorite starts against our defense that will be ramshackled today is brain dead

    The same people who write such things will be happy to shout referee bias when Tavares commits a penalty-foul on one the best dribblers in the league.

  41. andy1886

    Mystic, not sure what leaves you’re smoking but Cedric hasn’t done a good job as cover at all, he’s been as bad as Tavares, absolute liability IMO. On the ‘get rid’ list for me.

  42. Tom

    There was an interesting exchange in the NBC studio during the NLD between the host, Rebecca Lowe, and the two Robbies, when she asked them who needed the CL more, Arsenal or Tottenham.
    Robbie Mustoe said Tottenham needed it more and he made a solid and elaborate case to back up his point too.
    He mentioned Conte and the possibility he might leave if they fail to make it. He mentioned Kane and Son being in their prime and needing the CL exposure. Then he mentioned the new stadium and financial implications and so on.

    But Robbie Earle disagreed and said Arsenal needed to be back in the CL more , and when asked why, this was his rationale: “Because they are Arsenal”.

  43. Samesong


    I was going to say similar to Diss and Terra but they kind of answered how I was feeling towards your StM comment.

  44. LoveSausage


    So you’re saying you want to see a St Maximin – Cedric matchup for 90 minutes. Have you watched Cedric “defend” lately?

  45. Mysticleaves


    Haha. Leave the leaves. Only bad games I remember Cedric having are Man utd against Sancho and Spurs on Thursday. I think he’s done a good job overall. He’s back up for a reason you know.

  46. raptora

    We’ve been looking worse and worse in the course of the game. How dafug is that even possible?! Don’t we have a manager? Our game absolutely died the moment Arteta started to make subs. He’s so bad, he got not even one right or the change of his game plan.

  47. Ben D

    O guess it’s 5th and Europa League then… Gutted. Decent season overall though. Hopefully we invest well this summer and kick on