HEAVENLY GROUP STAGE – ARSENAL ARE BACK!

by .

THE CHAAAAAAMPIONS! DU DU DU DUH DUHHHHHHH!

It’s here my children.

Cancel your Wednesday night group therapy sessions with the boys – SPURS FANS CAN HURT YOU NO MORE.

The midweek is for The Arsenal, fighting the best clubs in Europe… it’s for the ELITISTS!

Well, kind of…

🇬🇧Arsenal
🇪🇸 Sevilla
🇳🇱 PSV
🇫🇷 Lens

I’m only the millionth person to point it out – but our group feels like a rough Europa League group stage versus a beastly battle of the icons.

Still, I’m not sad. The biggest worry we have from this lot is complacency.

Lens have lost two and drawn one in their opening games and lost two key players this summer.

Sevilla are bottom of La Liga after putting every single one of their players on the transfer list.

PSV are doing PSV things in the Dutch league. I feel like regardless of how badly they’re doing, they’ll always find a way of hurting us.

Overall, how can you moan? Every team is a short flight. The away day will be lovely. It’s a gentle bike ride back into the Champions League, versus the ‘Felix Baumgartner dropping from space’ adventure Newcastle are facing against Dortmund, Milan, and PSG.

The biggest test we’re going to face this season is the Champions League. Not because we’re ill-equipped – but because we have a group of players that has NEVER had to play 3 games a week from September.

Fatigue, both physically and mentally, sets in – you’re always tired.

You are playing BIG games and the pressure can get to you.

The team requires more rotation – and sometimes that breaks rhythm and fans can get angry

Fan expectation is maybe not living in the realm of reality at the moment – we’re expecting at least a quarter-final to be satisfied with the season. On paper, we have it, we’re 4th favorites for the whole thing – but in the real world, who knows, because our players have only played under easy conditions. Remember – Leicester won the league without Europe. Chelsea won the league without it under a tyrant manager. Placing high without mega-cup runs isn’t easy, but it’s not what Manchester City and old Liverpool have been doing for years.

To move to the next level – we need to be able to sustain the league AND the Champions League.

Can we do it? I bloody well hope so. This group gives me a lot of hope. I just hope the players aren’t as complacent as I am. Arsenal have been knocked out of Euro comps by Villareal, PSV, and Monaco in the past. Hopefully we’re ready!

One thing seems close to certain – it’s going to be very hard for Arsenal to bring in a new player before the window closes. Never say never, but it’s not looking good. An area of high concern is our defence.

  • Partey (RB)
  • Reuell Walters (RB)
  • Tomi (LB/RB)
  • Zinchenko (LB)
  • Kiwior (CB/LB)
  • White (CB/RB)
  • Saliba (CB)
  • Gabriel (CB)
  • T̶i̶m̶b̶e̶r̶ ̶(̶C̶B̶/̶R̶B̶)̶

8 defenders doesn’t feel very secure. Tomiyasu struggles with calf injuries and always gets injured. Zinchenko breaks every 10 or so games. Then you have Thomas Partey who is now a defender, but only because Arteta said so. Reuell Walter who is a baby at 18. Kiwior is a centre-back who is also a backup left-back but not a convincing one (yet). Ben White is a center-back, but he’s really our best right-back. Cover is there – but you have to squint and pray to the gods.

Losing Timber really has rattled us – but all these people complaining we haven’t immediately gone out and dropped another £40m to replace him are being very harsh. We did our business, we lost a key player, we can’t just replace him. Especially considering how specific we need to be with the players we bring in.

This scenario is basically the same as the one we dealt with when Jesus picked up that knee injury. Everyone said we wouldn’t survive without him, Eddie did the job, we scored just as many goals, and we were fine. We can start last seasons back 4 on Sunday and it’ll be great. Arteta is just going to have to get creative with back-ups – which is why he’s trying things now when he has a choice. Versus experimenting with new ideas under duress and more pressure.

Did I just speak of Eddie and not remind all his HATERS that their HATE powered him into the England squad? The man is a KING. League One Eddie. Jokers.

Back to my other narrative…

I did see someone make a great point on AFTV earlier – pundits spent the first half of last season saying City weren’t their usual selves at the start of last season. Why? They were trying new things. Different formations. Different player combos. New ideas. When they got into the backend of the season – they were more than themselves and they went on an extraordinary run. The work Pep did at the start of the season paid off during the backend. Arteta seems to be following suit – get your ideas down on paper, see what the players react to, and always plan to peak when the going gets tough.

We have not peaked at the right time 2 seasons on the bounce. Maybe this shift will help us make better decisions in the long-run. Rob Holding was a default because we hadn’t tried White and Partey earlier.  That won’t happen again.

Ok – short post today. Get on our latest pod. The boys reunite for a Champions League Reaction podcast with all the lads. x

498 Responses to “HEAVENLY GROUP STAGE – ARSENAL ARE BACK!”

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  1. Matt B

    Thank fuck peops like you, the Marko goons, that funny lad Luty who talks all the time about dicks and ass ain’t never at the Emirates. Sweet mercy

  2. Johng

    Habesha , no we wouldn’t want to spend vast sums on basically still a prospect. Didn’t Franny Jeffers knock them in for fun before he joined us

  3. Positive pete

    Yes Diss. Nigel is looking for Newcastle supporters on. an Arsenal blog.You know,this one.The one where it’s very common. To hear how shit we are as a club,how shit certain players are & certainly how shit the manager you. know ,those “ supporters”.You should be very familiar with them shouldn’t you?.Nigel gets it along with numerous others.
    Ona different note.Great to see the Billion pound squad get rolled over at home to Notts.Forest.That’s the same Nottts Forest we turned over at the y the way.In.addition great to see the Barcodes take a pasting at Brighton.This is what happen when you’re back four is disrupted.They got lucky. Last season .No injuries there & could play a settled back four.

  4. Leftside

    Partey being out is so annoying, and predictable. Well we have Rice there, and Jorgi, plus Elneny if need be.

    We can’t always go to the transfer window for every issue but I’m hoping that not getting in defensive cover doesn’t come back to bite us.

  5. Mr Serge

    Matt BSeptember 2, 2023 19:43:41
    Serge: What, the goon who got spanked at home last week by Moyes

    Yeah the same goon that spanked us at the Emirates twice last season knocking us out of the cup and stopping us winning the title

    That goon fella

  6. Adams

    I have a feeling we will sign evan ferguson next summer. Real madrid are obsessed with mbape, barcelona just signed a brazilian wonderkid, man u have invested in hojlund, bayern have kane, mancity have halaand that leaves us as the only one in need of a prolific scorer. Just wishful thinking but i hope it comes to pass i really love the boy what a player.

  7. Dissenter

    ‘Positive” Pete
    Have to knowledge your progress. You managed to post something with inserting “bedwetters” in it. It used to be a noun, a verb and …. “bedwetters” with you.

    Because some posters said something remotely positive or complimented their manager doesn’t make them Newcastle fans.
    I’m sure you know it’s possible to criticize something that you truly love because you expect better from it. Criticisms doesn’t make anyone a lesser fan or a non-fan.

  8. Adams

    De zerbi is a very intelligent manager anyone saying otherwise is just hating. But his only problem which is similar to arteta is that they believe too much in their playing philosophy that they don’t know when to adjust. Meanwhile i think either de zerbi or arteta will succeed guardiola at mancity. My bet is on de zerbi, very intelligent man.

  9. Thorough

    We better get whispering to DE Zerbis people now. Guy is smashing EPL in 1 year despite having his team gutted. Meanwhile Tets is on phase 1 million of stage 1000 and our pattern is unrecognizable.

  10. Nigel Tufnel

    Dissenter,

    I can’t make up my mind whether you’re really obtuse, or just pretend to be. I’ve asked you before….

    You don’t recall lots of regulars here being up Newcastle’s collective arse last season?
    “Guimares the player we should’ve bought… St Maximin so direct and exciting, Joelinton the same… Willock should be at Arsenal still” lol!

    These are all things YOU have read here. Be honest.
    I said it this afternoon, Trippier is the one exceptional player they have. The rest is mediocrity like the manager.

    You don’t really think I was talking about true Geordies being on legrove, rather than grovers who love to “appreciate” other teams players and moves, while being pessimistic about Arsenal and Arteta. That’s what goes on here and has been for years. Bamford style.

    Or maybe you don’t like me to rub it in their faces because you’re also a big admirer of the “Howe project”.

    I love the clowns here, enthusiastic about mediocre Newcastle, but down on Arteta’s project. Brilliant judges of football.

  11. benkind

    Matt B

    Yes, my favourite Manager is a trophy winning manager. Graham and Wenger won. Crazy what this place was like when Wenger was hitting 4th and getting FA cup. Arteta takes us to our worst positions in history and returns us to top 4 and what makes that special?

    We are allowed to discuss what is happening at the club. City can sell Palmer for 45million and yet we sell Balogun who has more goals and appearances for less. Arteta spends and buys players not good enough. He has bought 4 goalkeepers in 4 seasons 😀.

    I will complain until my team is winning and winning well. I don’t see Madrid and City Fans being complacent. But what do I know, we are in phase 5 and the poster Olumide already listed all the excuses from Aretasexuals

  12. Dissenter

    Matt B
    On another day, that laundry list of concerns you put up the other day would be construed as hating on Arteta
    What’s galling is the rank hypocrisy of assuming that one posters criticisms are legit whilst another’s are toxic.
    At the end of the day, it’s just opinions

  13. Nigel Tufnel

    Positive Pete,

    I just read your response for me.., great stuff.
    This place is famous for admiration of every project in the premier league, and when we finally get the best new one, they still criticise it and favor every other opponent. There must be a psychological term for it.

    Markymark will know, I hope he sees this..

  14. Positive pete

    Diss.Could go back & forth with our differences.But there no doubt in my mind of the type of “supporters” you & like minded individuals are here.And I use the word “ Supporter “ very loosely.let’s be honest here.Nothing pleases you.Perhaps it’s perfection you’re all after.Good luck with that.

  15. Mr Serge

    Matt BSeptember 2, 2023 20:27:17
    Hahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa: peops lovin a Brighton gaffer, whilst bitchin about an Arsenal gaffer who got us 2nd and we’re hating

    I am a big MA fan for snot mean I cannot admire what another manager is doing.

  16. Thorough

    I should admire Arteta that’s made our team totally formless after 4 years of spending a ton but deride DE Zerbis after one year on a modest budget? Are you people against progress or what?

    Arsenal attaining UCL after 4 years on spending a ton under 1 manager isn’t a bigger achievement than tiny Brighton achieving European football.

    And it becomes ridiculously laughable when you consider the pattern of play of both teams this year. Pound for pound DE Zerbis should be proud of his achievements.

  17. Matt B

    Benkind: My favs too — respect, GG 89 nothing will beat that

    Diss: Mate! For some reason that makes me a hypocrite? — Making a list of things that are questionable with what we see atm? But calling out gimps who spend every waking minute on here slagging off everything we do?

  18. Rich

    Remember when I told all you clueless gimps that we needed to read the curve on Partey, dump our stock while we still could, pivot in a different direction, even at the expense of a short term lack of cohesion?….

    And everyone of you told me that I was wrong?….

  19. Positive pete

    Adams. Ferguson is a prospect,no doubt.But Prob a little more than ehat Brighton will screw us for( £100 million plus.You know it) we might get Osimen.And on that note,we’re rumoured to have already opened negotiations with DeLaurents at Napoli.Exciting if true.

  20. Danny S

    Nigel

    Our project isn’t ‘new’. It’s 4 years and hundreds and hundreds of millions in.

    This year, on the face of what we’ve seen so far the project has seemed to have undertaken a new phase that’s a bit baffling to us mere mortals.

  21. Johng

    Not sure of your age so don’t know if you ever watched his Father fight. He was a hell of a fighter dvdn though he was as obnoxious as some of thd poaters on here lol

  22. Marko

    Thing I like about DeZerbi he has a style and a system and he brings in players that fit the system. He’s not trying anything on the fly he sticks to what works.

  23. Nigel Tufnel

    Izzo:

    “Kane has gone to Germany and there’s a dearth of England strikers so of course Southgate is calling him (Eddie) up”
    LoL
    Just to let you know, Kane has gone to play club football, he’s not emigrating.

    And people say “clown” is not accurate?

    Aside from your ridiculous understanding of the world around you, your big response to me is to continue to shit on our players more.

    I understand that you’re never going to change the way you behave, but as a response, that one was particularly juvenile and completely lacking self awareness.

    You can insult these players like a schoolboy, but they’re playing for their national teams, winning the champions league like Jorginho and Havertz, and-
    – at the pinnacle……
    playing for THE ARSENAL.

    In comparison,, you are a grown man being rude on the internet. — and making embarrassing mistakes !

  24. Samesong

    Un

    There was once a clip of guess who on question of sport I think the person training in the gym was Rocastle. Paddies gym in Sudbury. I used to train there years ago.

  25. Nigel Tufnel

    Danny,

    Ours is the best of any current project in the country… TODAY…. that’s all that matters, don’t waste your time debating the inception dates.

    You want to say that Newcastle, Ten Hag, or DeZerbi are at our level.. go ahead… I simply disagree.

  26. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Need to beat the manc scum tomorrow… they are in free fall which make them dangerous…
    Rash always shows up against us.
    Kai first GS 6/1

  27. Johng

    I think we are all lucky to follow a team in the most competetive league in the world. On any given day an upset can happen and there are some very good teams in the league. Let’s all hope that Arsenal are in with a shout when it gets to squeaky bum time again this season

  28. Adams

    Giving de zerbi credit does’nt mean arteta is shit. Some posters here need to calm down. Arteta is not perfect and so are other managers. We have to hold him accountable for some of his decisions if we are to succeed as a club. But some people here think if we don’t lick arteta ass we are not qualified to be called fans.

  29. Un

    Same song
    I trained at Earlsfield
    Saaaf London
    My cousin was English champion a few years back but lost the title and had to give up boxing due to an eye injury
    Allen looking like being stopped if he’s not careful here

  30. Vickingz

    Rich, yeah you were not just wrong but dead wrong. Who didn’t know that partey was instrumental to our play last season and he needed to be managed better this season? Well, galaxy brain didn’t and he’s the reason why Partey is out injured

  31. Adams

    Ramsdale, white, saliba, gabriel, zinchenko, jorginho, rice, odegaard, saka, nketiah, martilleni. I think this will do.

  32. Johng

    Rams
    White Saliba Big Gab Zinny
    Ode Rice ?
    Saka ? Martinelli
    The question marks are due to not sure if Jesus is fit yet
    I would like Trossard in the left 8 and Kai up front if Jesus not fit

  33. Rich

    Vickingz

    Managed better this season?…

    We’ve been playing a game a week so far, he’s played 3 x 90 minutes, and 1 x 58 minutes….. He’s a professional athlete FFS.

    The narrative we just needed to manage Partey,s game time better, is the biggest fallacy since Marx….

    He’s played just 2,100, 2,300 + 2,700 minutes in his 3 seasons so far, between the ages of 27-30.

    It doesn’t matter how good he is when he’s in the pitch, when his absences completely fuck us…. The best type of ability is availability.

  34. Rich

    Positive Pete

    Depends how fit Zinchenko is to start?…. We don’t want to be taking any chances at this stage with another defender.

    He’s been back in full training 4 weeks next Monday, but been out since the beginning of May.

    Hopefully he’s good for 60 – 70 minutes at least… This is what I’d like to see, Eddie deserves to start on current form:

    …………………Ramsdale
    ……White …..Saliba …..Gabriel
    ……………..Rice…..…..Zinchenko
    Saka Ødegaard Havertz Martinelli
    …………………….Eddie

    But maybe we’d go with this:

    ……………….…Ramsdale
    ……White …..Saliba …..Gabriel
    ……………..Rice…..…..Zinchenko
    Saka Ødegaard Vieira Martinelli
    ……………………Havertz

    Arteta’s been waxing lyrical about Vieira + Martinelli’s linkup.

  35. Dissenter

    Is there any confirmation has to how long Partey is out for .
    For all we know it’s a groin strain and the player decided not to risk,it over the international break

    I’ve been seeing uncorroborated reports of 3 months which makes no sense.

  36. izzo

    Adams, don’t talk too much sense or Nigel will get cha! He’s the big boogie man on these parts. Zero tolerance to criticizing Arteta or players earning millions.

  37. Aaron

    Would love to see the data on the number of sprints Partey has had to do at rb versus his dm role. Not talking heat map or distance covered, but intensity levels.

    Rich, you are seeing around corners man, but AFC would be lucky to get $5 mill from the Saudi’s for Partey.

    The defense will probably have another player go down before Jan due to the amount of games and lack of rotation.

    F me, sometimes cheering for this club is painful, not Detroit Lions painful, but painful nonetheless.

    Can Mikel get the team past manure? When the entire UNIVERSE knows they will sit back and hit on the counter.

    Let’s go.

  38. Dissenter

    Jesus is another one that may need to be managed properly
    Maybe they are better off easing him in, add the international break to his recuperation

    Tomorrow start with Eddie, more so after his England call up.

  39. izzo

    Oh Nigel let me rubber stamp it for you. I don’t like Arteta as a manager and I don’t like Eddie as a player. Neither have convinced me they have what it takes. Something about always coming up short when the pressure ramps up and just not having the mentality or ability to defy the odds. This season is already looking harder and you wouldn’t expect experiments and dying on a hill to take place when the season has just begun but here we are. Players already dropping like flies and shortening our numbers by getting rid of players and not replacing. Forgive me but what in the actual fuck!

  40. Nigel Tufnel

    Izzo,

    Tell me more about why Kane going to play for Munich got Eddie a call up to England that you say he doesn’t deserve.

    Those American fans are going to be angry when they hear Balogun has to play for France now!

  41. izzo

    Pretty sure Southgate sees Eddie as Kane’s replacement/backup. Southgate and Arteta are alike. Boring, predictable and never learn from their mistakes. Almost men.

  42. Nigel Tufnel

    Lol yes the injuries are Arteta’s fault according legrove.

    Uniteds many injuries not down to Ten Hag though.
    Chelsea injuries not down to Pochettino of course.

    Couldn’t possibly have anything to do with “bad luck”.
    Of course not.

    Even when it’s an impact injury that you saw occur on video. — Blame Arteta.

    This is why intelligent posters laugh at you.

  43. Nigel Tufnel

    Izzo,

    You’re not even honest enough to admit your poor understanding of world football.

    Keep trying to avoid it, talk around your mistake,, but everyone that read it is laughing at you.
    You do it to yourself.

  44. Danny S

    Partey injury might be a blessing in disguise.

    Might put an end to this right back nonsense. Get Gabi back in the centre with Sab and go back to basics.

    Only trouble is, who do we play in defence in the champs league.

  45. Dissenter

    DannyS
    Yup, that’s how I see it too.

    Partey’s injury may have helped to restore Arteta back to reality
    Now he has to restore BW back the right and just out Gabriel back in, warts and all.
    Wish we kept Tierny to back Zinch and then Tomi can compete with BE fkr the right back.

  46. Rich

    Diss

    The only reason we’ve been inverting from the right, is because Zinchenko has been out.

    Partey inverting from the right, particularly in games where we have more of the ball, is better than Tomi or Kiwior inverting from the left.

    Both players capable of doing a job there, but neither bring the level of control that Zinchenko or Partey do…. Even if both are superior without the ball.

    The theory is that the more of the ball we have, and the better we control the opposition without the ball inside their own half, the less we’ll be going backwards.

  47. kofi

    ‘availibility is the beat ability’

    truest post ever. checking all the best teams around the top leagues and basically you will see that there 2-3 most important players simply are available for nearly every game. by most important i actually dont talk about haaland at city, but more about rodri. think back about ‘messi barca’ – busquets was the real hero an he played 3.500-4.000 minutes every season. it depends on the system but most of the times those 6/8s are the ones that decide the fate of a good/great team in a season.

    just think about it – compare a partey and rodri. they play similar football, i would even go as far as to say that i like a fit partey more than rodri. but being available for 25-30 games is different than 40-45 games and thats the difference

    hopefully rice will give us the minutes every great team in the world needed to be ultra succesful – about 4.000 minutes for 8 seasons …

  48. Pierre

    Rich
    “The theory is that the more of the ball we have, and the better we control the opposition without the ball inside their own half, the less we’ll be going backwards.”

    Makes sense

  49. Rich

    kofi

    100%…. There’s a myth that City have a huge squad, they don’t…. They currently have 19 senior outfield players, and 4 goalkeepers.

    But at the business end of last season they had their players available, they focus on quality over quantity, and robustness + availability.

    There’s always risk, impact injuries can happen in any game or training session….. Bur we at least have to stack the odds in our favour, how many times did we see it under Wenger, that he’d gamble on injury prone players, and the same players would consistently breakdown?

    Over the past 2 seasons we’ve been in a strong position to hit our targets, but we didn’t have what it takes to get over the line in just one competition at the business end…. Let alone multiple competitions.

    We’re well stacked in the forward positions now, while I’d be open to an upgrade in any position, I never bought into the idea another right winger was a necessity…. We’ve got options there to shuffle the pack.

    It’s at the other end of the pitch we’re already short, and carrying players with questionable levels of robustness…. We’ll also lose Partey, Tomiyasu, Elneny for a month in January.

  50. izzo

    Nigel the only one laughing is you. Nobody asked for your opinion or for you to police the blog. Freedom of expression means I can say Arteta and Eddie suck at football. Whether you choose to lose your shit over that is your cuppa tea. You’ve never been outside a meter of your house so maybe don’t profess you know anything about “world football”. Bore off.

  51. EdTheRed

    Yeah, last January TF, when those of higher intelligence and deep footballing knowledge were salivating over possible £80m transfer of Mudryk to Arsenal, this hater was laughed at for suggesting we fork out £50m on Ferguson.

    But I’ll tell you something – emergence of Halland and Feguson indicates that classic no9 is back in fashion, so just as well we have Eddie in the squad, because this false9 stuff will be obsolete by the end of next season.

  52. Marko

    This Partey injury is taking me back to the times when arsenal would go into a season with squad lacking and then someone goes down with an injury and then we used to on legrove start asking about what free agents were available to bail us out of the problem. Filipe Melo was one name. Cana was another. Diarra

  53. Nigel Tufnel

    Izzo,
    Of course you can proclaim Arteta and Eddie Nketiah “suck”, feel free.. You do it all the time.

    People like me can say that’s a really cro magnon statement from you.

    It’s all opinion.

    By the way, you keep avoiding the fact that YOU just said today:
    “Eddie ONLY was picked by Southgate because Harry Kane is playing for Germany now”
    Keep hiding and avoiding it.
    If it was me I’d simply say “oops, silly mistake by me”.

    I’ll keep reminding you.
    That’s allowed also.

  54. izzo

    Never said that but latch on to whatever you want to make up in your mind. What do you think you’re achieving by claiming i made “an error” so fucking what? You’re clearly upset. Go drink some milk and calm down.

  55. Vickingz

    @Nigel, by intelligent posters, I hope you ain’t counting yourself among cos intelligent posters know you ain’t one.