Szczesny (6) – Had little to do all game. Did well when called upon.
Djourou (7) – A few scary moments. Other than that, a credible performance.
Vermaelen (8) – Solid game. Stood up to everything the Villa attack could muster. Helped up front when he could.
Sagna (8) – Did his usual.
Gibbs (8) – Good going forward as shown by the goal, but a bit suspect in defence today. Gervinho had to bail him out a few times.
Arteta (8) – Kept things ticking in the middle, a couple of attempts on target, and got his goal with a phenomenal strike from a freekick.
Song (8) – Did his job well, guilty of holding on to the ball for too long. Amazing through pass for the second goal.
Rosicky (7.5) – Continued his resurgence with an assuring performance. A joy to see him in such good form.
Walcott (8.5) – Good performance, great first touch and wonderful composure to get his goal.
Gervinho (7) – Better performance. Looked lively, got an assist.
Van Persie (7) – Started well but could not get a goal. Cut a frustrated figure late on, he’s surely had better days.
Santos (6) – Almost gave a goal away with his first touch. Settled well in the following minutes. Great to have him back.
Ramsey (6) – Came on with a fresh pair of legs. Added more bite to the midfield.
The Ox (6) – Good cameo. Picked up from where Theo left off.
There you have it guys! 7th straight win gives us a firm grip on 3rd place.
3 points ahead of Sp*ds, 8 ahead of Chelski. Not a bad time to be a gooner, eh?
Lovely weekend it was unless of course you’re Andre Vilas-Boas, the Chelsea manager got the sack yesterday…wait what am I saying? Just thought of how much he stands to make from his sevarance package and all of a sudden, he’s the winner. Boo hoo. He’s always been a small fish in a big pond and the cabal of Terry-Lampard-Drogba was just too much for him in the end.
This past month has just been great for us gooners(if you exclude the Milan & Wearside games), four consecutive wins, Van Persie’s hot streak knowing no end so far and now the good news that Wilshere is set to boost our run for champions league qualification. Lovely. Oh yeah good morning from wherever. Straight to the post then.
Jack Wilshere has returned to training according to Arsenal manager but he assured everyone he’s not closer to making a return, meaning he’s not match fit but is training with the ball I guess…..he had this to say.
- “We have good news but Jack isn’t close to a comeback. The last scan was good and he can start to jog again so he is on his way back. But we have to be cautious with him. I hope to have him back before the end of the season, but we go step by step”
His return would boost us and I’d like to see him play at least one-two games with Van Persie so as not to miss out on what is the dutchman’s best season ever.
Speaking of the dutchman, oh how I love RVP, he deserves all the credit for our season so far and the lovely connection between him & Alex Song is just marvelous. The goals at Anfield are still playing in my head. Top man.
Gunning For 3rd & Milan…..
Our very poor & history-less & pretty much noisy neighbors have been the toast of our half of north london so far. I doubt they’re enjoying being our source of joy and entertainment. From having been behind them by 13points(when it was 2-0 down against them last week) now we’re just 4 points behind and yet we’re having our worst post-Wenger season.
Credit must go to a lot of people & media for helping Sp*rs capitulate but it all centers around Redknapp, from tax evasion to England coach speculation and his naïve substitutions against Arsenal where it ended 5-2 in our favor.
Special mention goes to AW who has gone through a lot(he put us there in the first place) but has steered the ship around and now not only are we on course to make champions league next season, we might end up above Sp*rs. Great achievement considering all we’ve been through & playing the season without Wilshere.
Wenger confirmed my worst fears when yesterday he said he won’t be resting Van Persie or anyone for that matter against Milan. Oh dear. Here’s how the Milan game can play out for us.
1) We win the match but lose the tie and important players pick up knocks.
2) We lose the match, lose the tie and important players pick up knocks.
3) We win the match, win the tie & no one picks up any knock.
4) We rest key players, win the match, lose the tie and the players are fit and fresh for the Newcastle game next week which is more important.
I want the 3rd option but that’s going to require a miracle after witnessing a 14 minute Zlatan Hattrick on saturday. The 4th option would be nice but knowing Wenger, he’ll never do that. Let’s pray for a miracle then.
I’ll be here tomorrow to give the preview on the Milan game. Have a great day and let’s know what you think in the comments.
P.S. Diaby is injured again, pulled a hamstring…..and grass is still green…. Gibbs & Benayoun also picked up knocks ruling them out of the Milan tie but Arteta has recovered and is fit. Great.
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Arsenal kick off at lunch time tomorrow against Liverpool in high spirits and who can blame us? After last week’s mauling of Sp*rs. Sp*rs beat Liverpool 4-0 and we beat Sp*rs 5-2 so technically we should beat Liverpool by at least 5 goals right? I apologize for using the word Sh*t….sorry Sp*rs four times in one paragraph. . Well then, straight to the post.
Arsenal vs Liverpool(especially at Anfield) is a tie that is known to cough up goals irrespective of whether its a league or cup game, remember Arshavin’s quadruple in the 4-4 at Anfield and the Baptista’s in the 6-3 in the League Cup a few years back.
The reverse fixture ended in a 2-0 win for the scousers with the goals coming after an ijury ridden Arsenal team had frimpong sent off and then an own goal with a Suarez goal settled the day. In truth, they were poor but the lack of cutting edge on our side also cost us the match. Of course this was pre Arteta-Mertesacker-Santos-Benayoun & Gervinho Song were also missing via bans.
The Liverpool team will be buoyed by their Carlin Cup win which brought an end to their six year trophy wait but Arsene reckons it will have no impact on the game. I hope it doesn’t.
The form book on this one is a swinging pendulum. Liverpool have only won once in 9meetings against us and have never done a league double over us. Advantage Arsenal. Liverpool are unbeaten at home and conceded the second fewest home goals this season. Advantage Liverpool. Arsenal have conceded more goals at Anfield in the Premier league than at any other ground while Liverpool have won just 2 of their last 9 league games. Tie.
Daniel Agger misses out through injury and Gerrard is almost certain to miss out. I really don’t care for Gerrard, its not like he’s playing well, its Agger’s absence that delights me, meaning a makeshift defense for King Kenny. No news on Johnson but might be fit.
Arsenal have no new worries from the international break, RVP is fit and ready, Ramsey is out for a further 2 weeks(so too Santos). Djourou has a knock & Coquelin is out for four weeks.
HOW TO WIN…….
Liverpool have been very erratic this season, and the forms of both full backs have been a problem, Enrique started well but has struggled in recent times. Theo Walcott & Gervinho(or AOC or Benayoun, whoever Wenger goes with) would have to be on top form and I’d love to see Theo run into the channels through the middle.
Rosicky needs to be brilliant again like last week & prove it wasn’t a one off with another masterful display and we need to keep a tight unit at the back as the trickery of Suarez is going to be a problem.
Predicted Line-Up & Scoreline : Szczesny-Sagna-Vermaelen-Koscielny-Gibbs-Gervinho-Walcott-Song-Arteta-Rosicky-RVP
Liverpool 1:3 Arsenal
Win at Liverpool and pray Chelsea slip up at Bolton and it will be a great weekend. Let’s know what you think in the comments. Have a great day. Cheers.
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Top of the morning to you wherever you’re reading this from, or should I say Hi 5-2 you all?. Well then, straight to the post shall we.
News broke yesterday and twittermania ensued that we’ve agreed terms with Lukasz Podolski to join us in the summer with the only thing remaining now is a deal with the club. I wanted to doubt it seeing as its season ticket renewal time but from what we heard, we agreed a couple of deals in January but agreeing with their respective clubs was the problem.
If this is true(which I believe it is) then that’s a good move and he’s NOT going to be a replacement for RVP. He’s very versatile and can play on the left of a 4-2-3-1(4-3-3) formation or behind the main striker or alone upfront as he’s done for Cologne thus far. So that’s one down, hopefully 3 more signings to come(a DM, AM, Winger).
Four players might not be enough but its a good start, because if you look at the players leaving us this summer(Arshavin,Bendtner,Chamakh,Squillaci,Denilson,Diaby(50:50),Benayoun(back to Chelsea) ) we should replace at least 3 of them and then promote from within. And don’t tell me about how signing established players will hinder growth, instead it only helps(look at United, Bayern & Barca to name a few). M’vila, Gotze, Hoiliet maybe? And then move Walcott forward? Let’s wait and see.
The defender tweeted with his account yesterday that he’s back in 2 weeks and to me that’s great news as we all know Gibbs can’t play back to back games without a knock. So that’s very great news as we now have 2 LB’s and 2 RB’s(Sagna & Jenkinson) and won’t have to play anyone out of position again.
Someone asked me on twitter yesterday if I see Wenger buying a defender and I said NO. Why you ask? Well by beginning of next season, we’ll have Sagna, Jenkinson, Gibbs, Santos, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Mertesacker in the first team, that’s Seven defenders and I didn’t include Miquel, Bartley, Djourou.
Fiorentina are rumored to be interested in taking the forward off our books permanently and I say we should jump at whatever offer as I’m sure he’s ready to leave. Will it leave us short when he, Park & Bendtner leave in the summer? Maybe. But if we can get the aforementioned players and with the attackers we have already, it shouldn’t be a problem.
Van Persie has been talking of late about his love for the club and the papers reported it this morning that he told the dutch coach he sees his future at Arsenal. Its simple, give him the salary he wants, if its 150k/w or 130k/w with a lot of add-ons and a huge signing off fee. He’ll stay because he loves the love club, he just wants to sit with the gaffer come end of season, know what the clubs plans are and then hopefully sign the extension/new deal.
No club football this midweek as its International week and a lot of our players will be in action. One game to look out for is England-Holland. I hope Van Persie is rested to keep him fresh. From wherever you are, have a solid day. Cheers.
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Top of the morning wherever this post meets you!
The winter transfer window slammed shut last night and calls for strengthening the team in January fell on deaf ears. Not one player was added to the first team, not even the striker we all hoped Arsene would sign.
This however excludes the capture of German sensation Thomas Eisfeld. The 19 year old attacking midfielder joins from Dortmund B side and will be looking to make the huge step up.
In case you didn’t know, Ryo Miyiachi has joined Bolton until the end of the season. It’s good to have him staying in the EPL as it helps him to qualify as being homegrown.
We will also get to see him week in week out, so this has positivity written all over it. Let’s hope he can do a Wilshere and return guns blazing.
Talking Bolton, we play them later today in the EPL. Ryo won’t feature so you can rest your heads. They don’t have Cahill anymore so their defence is not as good.
It has to be noted however that they are in their best form this season, having won 2 of their last 3 in the league.
We have Sagna, Djourou, Arteta, and Henry back for this one. But I still would start Coquelin at RB and ease Sagna into the next home game.
Preferred XI: Sz13; Coq, Mert, Kos, TV5; Song, Arteta, Rosicky; RVP, Theo, Arshavin.
Rosicky deserves to start this one, he’s been nothing short of outstanding recently, so Ramsey makes way. I’ll also start Arshavin because of his experience and quality. Yes! You read that right, moreover I’ll be more confident if it was Oxo-Chamb replacing Andrei than vice versa.
I’m predicting 2-0 to the good guys!
Some good news comes in the form of Gibbs training again. We have had to shift TV5 to LB in the main time and it has not been entirely successful.
As such it will be great to have a mobile (and natural) LB who can support the winger. TV5 can then move back into his position at the heart of our defence.
Even though we dropped a lot of points January, one can see the reasoning behind Arsene’s refusal to sign a defender. We have most of our players returning; Diaby returned to London yesterday, Andre Santos last week and both are recovering well. Also Wilshere’s set back is not as serious as feared.
The victory over Aston Villa last weekend was a big boost and will help players’ belief; add that to recent injury news and we have a lot of reasons to stay positive. It’s not over…yet!
Before I go, I’d like to get your opinion on a very interesting issue. I was caught up in a debate on twitter this morning and it centered around our aspirations this season and the next.
So in short, if you had to choose between Arsenal winning the FA Cup this season (and finish 5th or 6th) OR Arsenal qualifying for the Champions League (and stay trophyless), which would you choose, and why?
Share your thoughts with me in the comments!
It’s quite a piss off when an initial draft gets swallowed into the Bermuda Triangle of writers like that of this post did. Oh well, good day still from wherever you read this. Always a pleasure to keep you in the know no matter what.
Well thank goodness we are done with the internationals, though this last round of proved quite eventful with a few brow raising results coupled with the Blatter matter.
All that take a back seat for the return of Premier League action with Arsenal kicking the action off in the early Saturday kick-off at Norwich City.
Arsenal go into the encounter brimming with confidence owing to a run of five wins in the last six matches and though Norwich have had a decent start to their return to the top flight; sitting in 9th place with 13 points, they lost 4-1 last time we paid them a visit and with almost the season’s regulars available for selection we can hope for three more points to the cause.
You noticed the almost right. Kieran Gibbs had a hernia surgery on Thursday stemming from the stomach strain he got a fortnight ago. Finnish English Carl Jenkinson is out as well with a back strain, nothing serious though.
On the up side, Jack Wilshere’s no more on crutches and as a result, is definitely on track for a return to the first team by mid December. French midfieder Abou Diaby is back in full training though and all that’s left for him is to regain match fitness.
Szczesny; Djourou, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Santos; Arteta, Song,
Ramsey; Gervinho, Walcott, van Persie (c).
I was going to put Chamakh or Park upfront bearing in mind we have a crucial Champions League match against Dortmund on Tuesday then I remembered RvP was rested from Holland’s humbling by Germany on AW’s request. And I think TV5′ll be rested for the visit if Dortmund.
I’m going for a 2-0 win to the Arsenal. What do you think?
Away from on field matters, the rumour mill is gaining real momentum even with January some 40 days away as there’s been talk of the usual suspects Yoann Gourcuff, Yann M’Vila as well as Pato, Lukas Podolski and Danielle de Rossi while Arshavin’s been linked to Germans Schalke in a swap deal that’ll see 27 year old Jefferson Farfan come to us.
Fiorentina is the latest club to be linked to getting cocky Russian Andrey Arshavin off the club’s payroll. A certain Andy Polo of Universitario de Deportes has also been reported to reject ‘interest’ from us in favour of a move to Real Madrid… I’m getting you Polo.
Finally, in case you still don’t know, Thierry Henry is back at the club. It is just for fitness’ sake though, but it’s Henry yeah? Theo will definitely be delighted to have him around as will the rest of the team. Hopefully, Marouane ‘distant cousin of Torres’ Chamakh will learn a thing or two… or three from the king himself.
Interestingly, when asked about any possible deal for Henry in January while the MLS is still on break, Arsene simply replied: “I have not thought about it.” If history tells us anything, it is that Wenger is capable of the impossible and bringing Titi back is not exactly out of his reach. That would be something, wouldn’t it guys?
Well, that’s yer lot for today, do let us know what you think in the comments!
And tell your friends who aren’t to follow us on twitter @goonermemoirs.
Have yourselves a great weekend Gooners!
After coming through 80+ minutes in the Carling Cup on tuesday and coming off with small cramp, The Verminator has been passed fit to take on Chelsea. Although Wenger is yet to confirm if he’ll start, he’s in the squad and that in itself is a welcome boost to the squad ahead of the trip to the neighbors.
Not only that, Carl Jenkinson is facing a race to be fit for the game and would need to pass a late fitness test. The young Finnish-English lad hasn’t played since going off against Marseille two weeks ago.
Finally, the injuries are beginning to ease on us and in no time, we’ll have all our players fit with the exception of Jack Wilshere who is ruled out till the new year and what better time for that to happen than when the team is on the ascendancy. Diaby & Gibbs are still out, with no set date placed on the return of the latter, but we should see them soon.
The Annual General meeting held yesterday at the club and due to different obstacles I couldn’t make it in person to attend and apparently someone asked for PHW to step down and bring David Dein back to the club. To read on all that went down, (open the link in blue) check out Le Grove I also heard Wenger gave a rousing speech. Good man.
That’s all for now, I’ll be here to give you the match preview early tomorrow morning. Don’t miss it. Do have a swell day.
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Its give-and-take season at Arsenal as great news always seems to come with some misfortune, but this is one piece of news I and gooners worldwide would appreciate. THE VERMINATOR IS BACK!!!!!!!!. For those that don’t know, that’s Thomas Vermaelen, our best defender and most prolific goalscoring one in years. Arsene Wenger had this to say about him:
- He’ll be back in full training on friday(today), it would be 10 days to two weeks for him.
The great news did not stop there as he also touched on Abou Diaby and Kieran Gibbs:
- “He(Diaby) is getting better but is not ready to play yet. He’s probably back in two weeks, just a fraction behind Vermaelen. While Gibbs is nothing serious and should be back in a week or two”
The only downside is Jenkinson who despite his great game at the Stade Veladrome on Wednesday picked up a knew injury which could see him ruled out for three weeks. With Vermaelen returning soon it might not be a huge loss as Djourou & Kozzer have been earmarked as possible replacements and the former having played there already.
One can only pray we continue to get good news as we’re slowly getting back on our feet. Again great credit to the defensive play on wednesday, very solid and matured. Cheers
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New week, new injuries, same players. At least we’re starting the week on a high, after captain Fantastic RVP bagged all 3 points for us, making it the second time he’s scored freekick winners against Sunderland in the month of October(2007 & 2011). The win came at a cost as perennial absentee Gibbs picked up another injury.
Needing six points from the remaining three games to qualify(nine points to win the group), Arsenal travel to Stade Veladrome to face Marseille on wednesday night. This would be no easy fixture as the opposition are worthy opponents and won the french league two seasons ago but history is on our side.
Arsenal have never lost away to a french club winning four and drawing three of seven games. Although the last game we played in France was 8 years ago winning 1-0 against AJ Auxerre. On the negative side, we have lost six of our last away games overall in the champions league proper.
Gibbs & Ramsey join the ever growing list of absentees with different ailments. Bar that, its the same players from the weekend as Vermaelen & Diaby are still a few weeks away from being fit.
I’d like to see a change in formation, maybe 4-1-4-1 with Song behind Gervinho-Arteta-Rosicky-Oxlade then RVP upfront. But knowing Arsene, Oxlade would probably be on the bench with Arshavin most likely to take Walcott’s place who underperformed against Sunderland. One prayer is for RVP to continue his rich scoring form and come through the game unscathed. Who knows, maybe we’ll finally get to see Park play.
Arteta to me has to up his game, hasn’t impressed me so far, Gervinho too but as time goes on hopefully they would, either that or drop them for hungry people that are willing to take their chances.
Predicted Line Up: Sczcesny-Jenkinson-Koscielny-Mertesacker-Santos-Song-Arteta-Rosicky-Arshavin-Gervinho-RVP
Prediction : Marseille 1:2 Arsenal
Well there you have it, let’s win this game, can’t take any risks, would love to avoid the likes of Barca, Madrid, Bayern in the knockout stages. From wherever you’re reading, have a swell day.
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