SPORTING ETHICS OF A ROUGH FA CUP DRAW

by .

Arsenal vs Liverpool is always a monster game – it’s not one I have fond memories of, if I’m honest. We’ve been getting battered since the Brendan Rodgers days. Even under Arteta, bar a few freak results; it’s mostly been unhappy times.

The FA Cup presents all sorts of ethical sporting dilemmas.

Klopp wasn’t interested in cups in the early years when he was chasing league titles. Arteta hasn’t been very good in these competitions since he won it in his first season in peak covid with a banter squad.

This game is a nightmare for both teams for these reasons:

LIVERPOOL CRUNCH: They’ve played a lot of games lately and they have a semi-final against Fulham in 4 days time. The League Cup is an easier path to a trophy with Middlesborough and Chelsea in the other semi. There’s a chance Klopp might see the FA Cup as overkill as he pursues a title and Europa League glory. He has a good squad, not a deep squad.

ARSENAL FATIGUE: The players are cooked. You can see that in the way they are applying themselves and how badly they took the West Ham result with that gross performance against Fulham. Arteta has to seriously consider how he sets up the team this weekend. There’s talk of Zinchenko being ready – he won’t be, because not even Mikel is mad enough to bring his injury-prone left-back back into the squad early for a cup game. We only need Zinchenko to stay fit for Palace, Forest, and the second Liverpool game at Anfield. He needs to be wrapped in cotton wool and dumped in a kryo chamber until Jan 20th.

What is worth noting is that 2 weeks off in sport is manageable and good for the body… 3 weeks off can start to affect fitness and form. Arteta can’t really afford to rest players in this game because that’d mean a chunk of squad out the game for 3 weeks.

THREE ON THE BOUNCE: Arteta will know the impact of losing three games on the bounce, at home, will not be good for the home crowd and it could impact the confidence of the players. At worst, he needs to spark some sort of reaction, and we need to see a fiery performance. A result could also calm the nerves of some fans who think Liverpool have stolen a march on us already. The worst thing that can happen with cup games is the players don’t want it because time off is more appealing. We saw performances like that under Wenger and it had the second-order effect of impacting future performances.

THE DRAW: Both teams will be desperate to avoid a draw. The replays will be on Jan 15th. That’s 5 days before the Premier League restarts. A nightmare for Liverpool, but really, a nightmare for both sides who don’t want to keep expending energy in grudge match showdowns. Expect the game to be off the chain, end to end, a battle for a knockout.

ARTETA TROPHY CABINET: The manager has been in a state of building for a long time, we all appreciate what he’s done, we love that we’re competing… but a trophy, even a small one, would show that we’re tracking. If we don’t win a cup this year, the project goes on… but it does open the manager up to critique. Is this tenure going to be like Pochetinos at Spurs or will it finally convert into the one that Klopp built at Liverpool? We are close to the 5-year mark. The process has been trusted, the squad is in all the comps it should be, we just need a shinier trophy cabinet.

Ok, that’s my Liverpool preview done. Jump on the Before the Whistle podcast, sign up to Patreon Exclusive for the ON THE WHISTLE tomorrow, and lets keep them crossed for a BIG win.

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— LE GROVE (@LeGrove) January 5, 2024

126 Comments
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Un

I actually think Werner is a very dangerous forward
Almost all forwards fail at chelsea
He could be very good at spurs where their game suits his style and skillet

Siddeeq

It getting clearer everyday why Man c sold us their players

Foxy

Maybe Arteta will now be forced to play Trossard and Martinelli together which worked well last season when Jesus was injured. It clearly wasn’t just the lack of goals that City sold Jesus for.

Dissenter

Un
That’s my point though
If you like Jesus, then you gotta like Werner

….and I agree that Werner will help Spurs because Ange’s playing style.

Olumide

Arsenal need to get the attack working and create proper chances today.

Dissenter

It’s amazing how our squad is so structurally imbalanced and vainly constructed
How can we spend so much money in three seasons and have so many deficiencies
I know some will say availability is the issue but even if all were available, it’s still a lopsided squad.
Almost like a barber was trying to be a roofer, or something

Foxy

Simply because we have wasted money and squad places on players who where never up to the required standard like Reiss, Elneny and Cedric and then bought unproven players like Vierra, Tavares and Lokonga

Un

Diss
I do like Werner
But Jesus is better in the final 3rd and the better player overall

Batistuta

Oh good..another 90 mins of Edward Nketiah bless him for all his efforts just not good enough for a serious football club

jwl

Todays daily mail, this is good month to have injury but Jesus is perpetual crock now and going to need replacing.
——-

“Arsenal are left sweating over Gabriel Jesus’ availability for FA Cup clash against Liverpool, with Brazil striker struggling with a knee injury ahead of third-round tie at the Emirates”

Rich

Via Billy Carpenter “When I pulled data in July, Brighton had spent €788m less than Manchester United on transfers since 2016-17, but completed 104 more transactions. Their average transaction size was 15th in the (current) league. Frequent, considered bets, nourished by reliable minutes” This was interesting, for Brighton it’s just a numbers game, our business model will obviously be different. All clubs gamble, buying a readymade products straight off the top shelf, isn’t just expensive in fees, but also wages. If we make 10 bets for a combined £200 million over 5 years, and our revenue was £400 million p/a.… Read more »

jwl

Lots of gooners on twitter want havertz to start as striker, and esr as an eight, to see what happens but arteta doesn’t seem to experiment he seems very rigid in his ways. I will be surprised if today starting xi are anything other than what we expect.

CG

Re :Jesus

Increasingly looking a masterstroke and sensational piece business from Guardiola in selling Jesus and Zinchenko to his tribute act Arteta – and upgrading with Ake and Haaland with the funds.

Both ex City players now both struggling for fitness and form.

Arsenal have to stop buying other clubs cast offs. It’s become a sort of an addiction, post A.Wenger.

(Willian, Luiz, Havertz, Jorginho, Jesus and Zinchenko) and start giving their own young talents a chance

Eg Patino and ESR.

It’s very very bland and unimaginative as well.

Rich

Buying other clubs cast offs is what we do when we’re trying to climb the ladder.

When our stock as a club rises, that’s when we can pick off more of the best readymade talent.

We’ve developed Saka, Martinelli, Odegaard, Gabriel… And CG bitched through the entirety of that process.

Thierry Martinelli

Jesus out again…..no surprise at all🤣🤣🤣🤣
As much as I love the guy, it’s time I concede that he should play 2nd string to Nketia

Thierry Martinelli

Buying other clubs cast offs is what we do when we’re trying to climb the ladder.

That’s how you remain in stasis

Marko

Really goes to show you how lean our forward options are. Basically two out and out strikers and one barely scores enough while the other barely does anything else. Can’t trust these two to win you anything major

benkind

People forget Arteta and medical staff might have aggravated Timbers injury. He got injured in the first half towards the end goes in for the half time break and then is substituted within 5 minutes of second half.

Anyone remembers partey being pushed back on the pitch after being injured.

Asides driving players into the red zone, nothing about Arteta shows he doesn’t see players as tools. Use until it breaks and just get a new one while complaining.

Spanishdave

Eddie up front it’s goodbye FA cup
100 k a week just think about it he’s having a laugh.

Dissenter

Against Fulham, Eddie was shit for the first 25 mins, then Jesus replaced him and was shit till the end of the game

It’s just two sides of the same damn coin .

Alexanderhenry

I think we win this game. 3- 1

TheLegendaryDB10

New post

Goona

COYG!!!

Un

So much better without martinelli

raptora

God damn Kai should score there….

Youdaman

Jorginho, so under rated