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Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest should be a good game. I’m actually watching it in the Midwest with an English Forest fan. So should be fun.

For Arsenal, it’s a return to no-drama business. The pain of December needs to be truly laid to rest with another clinical afternoon in front of goal. My Forest friend said the issue they have in the midlands is their defence is not very good, and sadly, Matty Turner is a bit of a basket case in goal so far this season.

Arsenal players will know the weakness of their ex-teammate, and I really hope they take a moment to rip off some nice early strikes. The team also needs to test his passing early. He’s uncomfortable with the ball at his feet, he hates being pressed, and his big problem is he let Ramsdale affect him because ambition kicking is part of his game but without the talent of the Englishman.

Word is starting to creep out that Thomas Partey is in the mixer for the squad this game, extra helpful now Ghana is out, so there should be no drama putting him in the squad for Forest. Remember who told you that on Monday.

Thomas Partey returning to the fold gives me a lot of hope. Letting an international team with short-term objectives on the line was always a recipe for receiving the player back in a broken state… a bit like Mo Sarah. Recriminations abound regarding the severity of his injury at AFCON.

The most important thing Arteta can do with Thomas is look after him. He’s injury-prone, but he’s very good. We don’t need him training like a madman every week. Just treat him like Ledley King. We know he can do the job. He can’t if he’s broken. Partey has been broken twice this season in training. That’s a club issue, not a player issue. Some minutes at the weekend put him in the mixer for Liverpool. Even if he doesn’t start, it makes Klopp’s prep for the game a little tricker. Will we play him in the pivot, will we play him at right back, will Declan play a more advanced role… he’s a really flexible piece on the chessboard.

I’ve penned a couple of pieces on fixing the atmosphere at The Emirates (here & here). The reaction from some quarters has been disappointing. There’s nothing worse than giving up on greatness for me. A lot of people told the world at the beginning of The Emirates journey it would be impossible to get the stadium bouncing – admittedly, it was always going to be hard during the end-of-days-Wenger period. But when the football got better and fans felt valued, the noise was the best in the league. I’m also not sure why we’re pinpointing the shift as a moment when we were great, it got great after the three losses on the bounce. Chasing top 4 can’t be the pinnacle of the atmosphere. We’re still on the journey, let’s not get too good at singing until we’ve at least won a major honour – then, we can bust out the prawn sandwiches.

If you can do it once, there is a path to do it again. It just takes effort and the acceptance that success happens in incremental baby steps.

The atmosphere at Arsenal this season has been drab. People have defended the club asking fans to not to believe their lying ears, but when Arteta and Martin Odegaard are waving arms and begging for noise, those opinions have to be discarded. I wrote on Jan 1 that there would most certainly be noises in the Marble Halls from the sporting department and sure enough, those noises have been heard.

Before we get into that, the club said that 12,000 tickets are exchanged each game, which is about 21% of the home supporters. That number has been inflated because digital allows the club to see it now, but it does show 2 things: 1) There’s a lot of movement of tickets, which hurts familiarity 2) Touting didn’t die, it’s just bundled into ticket exchanges (a cost of being good, I’m afraid).

Anyway, bigger point to this rant is: The club is now actively engaging supporter groups on how to get to a better atmosphere which is great news, because they are at least owning the problem, vs pretending it’s not real. It’s also great news, because there’s a view that atmosphere is the sole responsibility of the fans. It’s not. The club has a massive hand in it. They control who gets tickets, what is said on the PA, what music is played, what TIFOs get signed off, whether the drummers get their own sound systems, whether they want to shift the noisemakers into one section. Fans ultimately do the work, but if they don’t have a club supporting them, it’s really hard in an established stadium. And let me just double down on the fans… there is easily 3000 fans in that ground that want to sing. My brother was one at the last game. The job of the club is to unlock that potential and make it core to the game day experience.

Credit to club leadership for owning the issue.

Ok, that’s me done, listen to the podcast RIGHT NOW. x

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All you seem to do is hone in on those that don’t see things quite like you and your divine leader.
I’ll stick to my beliefs and you and your mates can stick to yours.
Just because I don’t agree with Pedro’s perceptions on things, has nothing to do with you.
In any case, as long as I’m given the freedom to highlight my own opinions on here, I’ll keep doing it!
Enjoy the rest of your day.


Pedders. It’s all how you frame it…. Exactly my point – it is how you frame it. First and foremost, it is not all about the EPL. Secondly when you believe Man City have stopped us from making any kind of progress as a club then people will laugh at us. Let’s do a little checklist of the teams that’s knocked us out of competitions under Arteta. 2022: FA CUP – Lost out to Nottingham Forest CARLING CUP – Brighton EL – Villareal 2023: FA CUP – Lost out to Man City CALING CUP – Lost out to West Ham… Read more »


Serious question who is throwing in the towel.. ? Pedro who thinks things are fixable or you who think we should be punching above our weight with a manager you think is garbage? Seems like you have already decided to throw in the towel and then are complaining that everyone else hasn’t joined you too.


“We are up against the most ruthless club ever put on this planet. If you are disappointed we can’t beat them to the league after 4 years, that’s up to you. But you are vastly underestimating the quality of what we’re trying to take down.”



I’m saying how many other teams have beat Pep the last 6 years. and then weigh that expectation up to yours and see how that worked out for you.


Apparently you thing the manager you think is garbage, should have beaten the best manager in the world in 3 years or less. That seems realistic.


You’re putting words in my mouth. I am saying if you guys think Arteta can’t beat Guardiola then we can just get rid of him or close up shop? Do I have to reel out a list of the teams that have beaten Guardiola and ManCity to titles the past 3 years?


Also you are the one accusing Pedro of throwing in the towel when he is on here daily saying he thinks Arteta can do still do it .. Seems to me Pedro has not thrown in the towel at all but you have and are advocating for giving up and starting over as the only solution to beating Pep to the top. That’s about as simple as I can bring it down for you.


If you read Pedro’s post that I quoted and you still think I’m the one throwing in the towel then I give up.


Pedro just stated a fact. City have won 5 out of last 6 Titles and won the Treble last season… at what point did you think.. this should be easy?


We were 11 points ahead last season with nothing else to play for. That’s one scenario.

Liverpool lost one on the final day and won the following one right? What should Klopp have told his board? We can’t compete with Guardiola and ManCity so let’s give up.


Has Pedro ever said we should give up? for one? Think he is saying the exact opposite.. he is saying we should stick the course because obviously it’s hard. I think your trying to bash him for recognizing the reality of the situation and you missed badly with your shot. Is my opinion.


Anyhow, I think a much better debate is can we get back to where we were a season ago with basically the same personnel besides Xhaka. And I think we can if we can get some players back from injury and maybe rethink the midfield situation.. I think the Havertz Rice Ode.. mid is better for defending a lead then trying to gain a lead, and that is why I think we have stalled moreso then anything. Not sure it’s a sackable offense every time the manager tries a new approach though, but that’s what the debate turns in to… Read more »


It’s ok to loose to Peps City. It’s not ok to completely collapse 2 years in the row against crap teams in PL and just the same in Europe.
Noone is saying that CL and PL is easy.
Wenger or Zlatan never won CL.


We should try Partey Rice ESR.


Ya Rollen that’s why I say.. they will assess all that this summer. I think next season is last one of Teta’s contract so all that is probably up for review. I doubt they will keep him lame duck .. so they will renew or change. But I bet they will factor in a lot of things including difficulty of task. Kroenke’s seem very data driven with all their teams.

Nigel Tufnel

Framing Arteta a failure because he hasn’t dethroned the treble winning monsters of Man City is like criticising a guy who lost a fight to prime Mike Tyson.

As it is, we’re still in the fight and competing in the 2 competitions that I care about. Pedro and others add necessary context.