TOP OF THE TABLE CLASHES ARE BACK

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It’s BIG game eve. Are you nervous?  Yeah, me too. But good nervous. These consequential games at the top of the table are the type I never thought we’d be around again.

Arsenal vs Liverpool. Home advantage to us. No one has any idea how the game is going to shake out because we’re both world-class sides.

There was a little bit of disappointment pre-game. Thomas Partey’s issue he picked up in training has extended out to him missing the game. It’s not serious, so he’ll be about for the run-in. You just have to remind yourself you can NEVER rely on Thomas Partey for anything. The man is Abou Diaby part II. It’s a sad way for a professional to go, especially one with no injuries during his time at Atleti. There is no doubt that we need to find a player who can do the things he can PLUS stay fit all season. I really hope we’re plucking from the Premier League this summer.

Still, that doesn’t stop us doing bad things to Liverpool. One of the most productive teams in the league has been largely controlled by Arsenal in the last two games despite the big W not coming out way. The luck has to change at some point, so if we go out tomorrow and play like we did in the cup, anything is possible.

We had Jorginho in the side and we battered them for an house. We also had Kai Havertz as a number 9 and he played really well. I’d be shocked if we don’t see Kai in the starting 11, his power, speed, and aggression could be really additive to the game. He should also be in great shape because he had a little rest last week.

This is a game that we’ll get big chances, Liverpool will offer us space at times, the only thing we have to deal with is their exceptional keeper.

Big games need heroes, they need magic, and they need a bit of luck. Our front three needs to deliver some xG monstering.  I can’t be watching Gabriel Jesus falling over chances, Bukayo and Martinelli to play at their peak, and the whole team needs to take more responsibility for being killers.

The consequences are massive for the league. Lose, it’s over. Win, it’s on. Draw, it’s back to doubt. I think the mathematicians in the fan base would disagree, but from a feelings perspective, and a general narrative, it’ll be really hard to bounce back from a loss.

I’m still maintaining that Manchester City are the big dogs in this race, I think Liverpool will run out of steam, and at some point, doing it for the boss will wear thin. We just need to keep pace.

I want Arsenal to be in that mixer because I want Arteta to show the world the rebuild people thought was OTT was necessary and that it’ll work. I want the underlying performance metrics to be recognized by real world results. I want to see Arsenal have the first breakout performance of 2024.

I am fine with a Manchester City-like slow start… but we have to finish with a bang. Win this game, we have a lovely run of matches up until the Manchester City away day at the end of the month.

Winning here makes everything better.

Let’s see what the boys have.

There are TWO podcasts waiting for our Patreon listeners. Johnny went solo for a Before the Whistle and I dropped an interview with one of the most interesting people one Arsenal: Tim Payton of The AST. Take a listen, it’s excellent content, and I learned a lot.

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rollen

Theo and Loreal on the stands.

Matt

Love sausage, I was just thinking the same thing.

Guns of SF

how is that NOT a pen

raptora

Would have been too harsh to give a pen for that challenge.

Aaron

pool will gladly take the point, AFC need the Win!

Play like you mean it..

There is something in this for AFC..
Let’s go.

Chris

Bring on Eddie

Dissenter

Havertz had been good overall but his first touch was poor there

andy1886

Dear oh dear Kai, so poor.

raptora

Okay they fucked up same way we did MARTIIIIIII

Thierry Martinelli

Kai getting in good position but now power no pace; the 2 things that Pedro said he’ll bring on the pitch clearly not there.
But he’s really playing his socks off today

rollen

Kiwior is not a LB.
That’s a pen.

Useroz

YESSSSSS

goona

Lol you fucking fucking BEAUTY

Vickingz

Yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhhjjjjjjjj

raptora

Get the fk in!!!!

karim

BOOM

Chris

Haha.

That was worse than our cock up!

goona

Now wake the fuck Up

rollen

Fuck Raptora time traveller!

LoveSausage

Yeeessss!

TR7

One calamitous goal canceled by another

Rich

Get the fuck in..

Mistakes are a part of football..
cheeky little push by Martinelli, hopefully gone unnoticed..

Dissenter

That’s why you never stop running

Justice !!!!!

Habesha Gooner

Yeaaah come on. Needed that.

Wardo

A gift from each team. Is it Christmas

Fucking yes come on arsenal

andy1886

Fuck me two real clangers today, but we’ll take it!

Useroz

VVD saliba’ed it

Wake up boys and keep the lead ….score more

G8

Justice ⚖️
Hahaha Hahaha 😆 😂

Thierry Martinelli

The 2 best CBs in the world gifting their opponents in the same match.

Aaron

pool doing an AFC defensive gift.

Kiwior with a very good ball to have a go at, and Martin with finish!

LoveSausage

One massive fuckup for each team. No more than fair.

Kudos to Martinelli for bullying VVD. He’s been very good today.

Useroz

C’mon Arsenal

goona

Shoot you fuckers shoot!

Wardo

Come on lads. You’re up for the fight. Crowd are behind you. Fucking come on

Dissenter

Now we have to win this

Breathe some life into our season

rollen

Push them now! It’s ours game to not win!

TR7

Saka should strive to do more…..has gotten in to so many good positions but the output very ordinary.

Useroz

We have enough players to do it if they focus … c’mon boys

Don’t slow down

That’s the way. SAKA. Boot it out….

Trossard on… but prefer Martinelli to staying on

rollen

Emirates loud now, it’s Theo and Giroud singing!

Dissenter

It’s one of those games where we don’t need to make any changes, except for injury or to avoid a second yellow card

Vickingz

This coach is as useless as possible in psychology

Useroz

Martinelli doesn’t want to come off and I agree … he’s faster and much better in defending

goona

Should of left marti on an saka off

Marky Mark

Pool very calm after fuck up actually dominating. We need to play this as an educational to our young guns

Marko

Mikel going for the easy sub. God forbid he takes off Havertz

Vickingz

This coach has successfully killed our attack

Useroz

Liverpool fears Martinelli FFS..

If he isn’t tired why took him off??

Pre-planned ?

raptora

Arteta had Tross ready to come in before Marti even scored. Shitty managing with the preplanned subs.

Paulinho

“Saka should strive to do more…..has gotten in to so many good positions but the output very ordinary.”

He’s not really capable of much more. If a team shows him the far post he can be dangerous but other that he simply doesn’t have much in his locker.

G8

Wrong sub Arteta
Wrong one man!

TR7

Martinelli should have stayed on

raptora

Kai is clearing each of Pool’s corners.

Paulinho

Would love to try Smith-Rowe on the right. Someone that can go both ways and shoot with both feet.

Aaron

Got it wrong again, Gabriel with the long ball.

Tross the boss, get on the end of one for us…

Keep the defense tight and we can hit them on the counter for clean breaks.

Vickingz

Saka showed that he was carrying a knock but the generational removed Martin instead

Habesha Gooner

The only dangerous thing from Pool today has been the long shots from Macallister.

Useroz

Now Saka looks injured and without Martinelli ??? Stupid sub. It wasn’t broken … why the change

Guns of SF

Good Reiss in

G8

We have zero outlet and saka looks injured
FFS Arteta should have left marti on

rollen

Now he will sub Saka, how dumb.

Habesha Gooner

I actually like Riess. He is tidy and keeps the ball. He needs to do that for the rest of the game. And track his runners.

Useroz

Kiwior is light weight and losing 1v1 with Nunez etc

Dissenter

Martinelli was giving city lots to think about

That was the wrong change because Trossard doesn’t have any pace

Now I hope he goes on to score since I wrote this

G8

I give up

rollen

Hopefully he will be ok

Aaron

Agreed Guns, someone to run the channels or over the top, stretch these guys out.

Paulie

Why the hell did he take-off martinelli

Dissenter

* Martinelli was giving Liverpool lots to think about

goona

Predictably we now sit further and further back…

Useroz

Keep defence tight and no cute stuff

C’mon boys

Useroz

FFS. Kiwior no need to rush can bring ball down

goona

Should be game over…we don’t have killer instinct

LoveSausage

Ffs. We just don’t kill games. Kiwior should have buried that.

Dissenter

Odegaard has played like a captain all game

rollen

I think when Wenger always said that we play with handbrake on he meant that Arteta was on.
Kiwior should have score.

andy1886

Nice cushioned header back to their keeper…

Paulinho

Cool defending from Kiwior to cushion it back to Alison.

LoveSausage

Big Gabi and Saliba need to keep track of Ratface. We really don’t need that cunt getting his customary goal.

Useroz

KONAte off

raptora

Superb game Kai!

Red for Konate!

Rich

Well done Kai 👏

Useroz

Havertz brilliant move and got a RED for Konate

goona

Havertz has been superb…if only he could finish

LoveSausage

Beautiful!

Gommit

This was by the book.. Happy now that Gabriel got his card

raptora

Kai loves a scrap. What a guy!

TR7

Harvertz has looked much better as a no 9 than he has ever as a no 8 in the Arsenal shirt

bendabrah

Kai has been very very good today….

Useroz

Calm down boys..

Nelson no need to rush we had 4, 5 in the box

goona

7mins? Wtf?

LoveSausage

Havertz is a never going to be a great forward but he does the thing that Saka doesn’t. Runs at people and gets in their faces.

Paulinho

I find our performances so bizarre. Can hardly remember any passages of cohesive play in so many of our matches but we grind our way through.

Useroz

Trossard
3

raptora

Diss got what he wanted!!!!

goona

Lol get the fuck in the BOSS BOSS BOOSS

Rich

Get the fuck in…

Tross the boss..

Useroz

Bye bye Klopp

💪💪💪💪💪💪

karim

Get da fuck in !

Habesha Gooner

Deserved. We have been the much better side. Come on.