Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Transfer Musings

After finishing 4th and not winning Silverware, supplemented by the revelation that we have 70 million to spend, I think we all expected some players to have come in by now. At the time of writing, only Yaya Sanogo, who looks half decent, has come in on a free.

So....who do we need?

Striker. Winger. Centre back. Not saying holding midfielder because I feel Arteta (and Ramsey) did a good enough job.
Personally I was thinking realistically - we're weren't going to spend 40 million (I may have been proved wrong now), so I was thinking a solid striker - one of the Eduardo types. Someone like Soldado came to mind. A 15-20 million winger, and a young CB with bags of potential.

Who did we want to sign before the window even started?

1) Cesc. Because he's Cesc and we love him. Now shh. But he ain't coming...
2) Jovetic. Yes, the Fiorentina target man who has just signed for City. Once again, we weren't willing to pay enough....
3) Williams. No update on this. Very unlikely to happen.
4) Fellaini....Nah.

Who's just recently come onto Wenger's radar?

1) Higuain. He's been having a medical for the last week (with M'vila) after countless fees and terms were agreed. Joking aside, still a chance we can sign him. Should only be 5-10 mill. difference in price. I'm sure Arsenal's his preferred choice over Napoli anyway, but if we don;t give the money....
Chance? 40%
2) Suarez. Yes, yes, he's the scum of the earth, a cheating, lying, racist diver....but he's good. Wenger has made 2 official bids for him ,estimated to be around 35 million, showing he is serious about this.
Chance? 60%
3) Bernard. This is interesting. He looks very good. L'equipe and many respected journalists such as myself reporting that we have agreed a 21 million deal for him. Would be really happy if it went through.
Chance? 70%

Realistically, I think 3 players will be the maximum we will sign. I would prefer Higuain, Bernard, and a centre back.
I certainly hope Wenger knows best.

(Very late) Season Review

Firstly....apology to the group of 3 of you who may read this blog. I have just realised I have not posted for a year.

Before transfer thoughts, here's a quick round up of last season:

August: Giroud misses a crucial chance against Sunderland, Dull draw away at Stoke

September: Diaby becomes a beast and we win at anfield, Solid CL win after smashing 6 past Southampton, late goal rescues point at city, another rout vs. Coventry, before our first loss to Chelsea :(

October: Very good away win at WHU, another CL win , loss to Norwich?!, Loss to Schalke ,nervy win against QPR,epic comeback at Reading feat. Chamakh!

November:  Poor loss to Utd, score draw against Schalke, last min penalty miss from Arteta vs Fulham, BEAT THE SCUM 5-2 AGAIN, Brilliant Podolski volley secures 2nd place in CL group, dull draws vs Villa and Everton

December: Horrible loss to Swansea feat. Michu, Dead rubber loss to Olympiakos, Cazorla becomes first player to ever dive as Arsenal beat West Brom, Awful loss to Bradford, Smash 5 past Reading, Resilient win over Wigan, before Walcott shows his striker credentials and scores 3 in a 7-3 win over the Geordies

January: Bore draw at Southampton, before exciting one vs. Swansea, Koscielny thinks he's playing for Saracens as City win 2-0, Wilshere puts in world class performance to defeat Swansea, another loss to Chelsea, before demolishing WHU, tight win over Brighton before comeback against Liverpool to draw 2-2.

February: Two 1-0 wins against Stoke and Sunderland before crashing out of FA cup to Blackburn, comprehensively beaten at home by Bayern and Arsenal officially in crisis.Late goal from Cazorla secures all win record for the month.

March: Poor defending lets the Scum beat us and send us into a downward spiral, which is precisely why we became the only team to beat Bayern in their back yard.A solid 2-0 win over Swansea was followed by another smashing of Reading.

April: Rare Rosicky goals down West Brom, before 3 goals in 7 minutes help Arsenal beat Norwich, Judas scores as Arsenal get a draw vs Utd.

May: A crucial 1-0 win away to QPR before smashing Wigan at home. Kosicleny acrobatically finishes against Newcastle to secure 4th spot and make us all celebrate St Totteringham's day.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Fulham Review/Ratings


Ugh. That is all.

Player ratings:

Szczesny [5-0]: Flapped.

Djourou [4-0]: Terrible, stupid red.

Mert [5-5]: Ok performance.

Kos [6-5]: Best of the bad, good goal.

Coq [6-0]: Sound shift played out of position.

Song [5-5]: Not great.

Arteta [5-0]: Poor.

Ramsey [5-5]: Sloppy, but a few good efforts.

Gervinho [4-5]: Wasteful.

Walcott [4-0]: Awful final ball.

RVP [5-0]: Didn't do much.


Rosicky [5-0]: Poor passing.

Benayoun [5-0]: Invisible.

Squillaci [1-5]: An extra point there for a lovely assist for Zamora.

Sorry for the sort post, but I'm too frustrated to write anything longer.

Friday, December 30, 2011

QPR Preview

2 posts in one month is a rarity, here they are in a day.


Promoted teams have done OK this year, and QPR are no exception. Helguson's scored 5 in his last 6, and we've all seen what Taraabt can do. Unfortunately, we'll have to play against Joey B*rton again, so they'll just need to keep their heads, with B*rton getting Gervinho and Diaby sent off in the last 2 matches.

Match Ups:

Kos/Mert vs. Helguson: An in form striker, but they should be able to contain him.

Song vs B*rton: Song, having nearly got sent off against Wolves, will need to keep a cool head against this fellow.

Walcott vs Traore: Relishing this one. Traore, the awful full back, who was smiling at the end of the 8-2 defeat, vs Walcott, back from illness.

RVP vs Ferdinand: RVP will be hungry for the 3 goals to surpass Shearer's record, so I at least expect a couple.

Predicted line up:

There will be rotation in some areas, so here's my line up:

I expect Ramsey + RVP to get a rest next match....

Predicted result:

Arsenal 3-1 QPR
RVP x 2            Helguson

Review of Mancs + Villa + Wolves

I'll keep this short and sweet, been busy the last few weeks:

Man City

Admirable performance, could have gone either way, but conceded a preventable goal. Missed Sagna there, as Koscielny just drifted inside and forgot he was a RB when we conceded.

Stand out performer(s): Vermaelen, Arteta
Flop(s): Walcott, Arshavin

Aston Villa

Dodgy performance, due to fatigue. But we got the 3 points. Benayoun showed his worth, nodding home late on.

Stand out performer(s): Van Persie (Goal,Assist), Benayoun (Goal)
Flop(s): Nobody stood out


Poor performance, especially after we took an early lead from Gervinho. Henessey made 11 wonderful saves, as Arsenal could not unlock the door.

Stand out performer(s): Gervinho (Goal), Rosicky
Flop(s): Ramsey, Song

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Man City preview + Tactical thoughts: 5-4-1/3-6-1/-3-4-3?

Apologies (to all 2 of you) for having posted for so long.

We've had good wins against Norwich, Wigan and Everton, which was the first game I went to since Newcastle last season, with only a blip against Fulham. Anyway, we are currently 5th, due to Chelsea's win over Man ¢ity, but otherwise, I feel that we have made a full recovery.

So Man ¢ity at the weekend. Just been shaken up by a team we can beat. And I also forgot to mention the Carling Cup game against them. Top performance by all the players out there. Even Chamakh and Squillaci gave a decent account of themselves. Game we should have won, but at least there's a few less games, and a few less chances for injuries. And credit to the Arsenal fans who showed Nasri how passionate we really are.... ("Nananananananana, Samir you're a ____, Nanana, Samir you're a ____ !").

So, as you know, we will have no full backs until the Wolves match, where Gibbs will come back, and hopefully Sagna soon after. That's still a Man ¢ity and a Villa game to negotiate before that. Against Everton, I noticed the defence held apart, but possibly due to the fact that  Everton posed little attacking threat. 4 centre backs against the likes of wingers such as Adam Johnson and co. (unfortunately, Ca$hmir Nasri's not going to play after another dismal performance) will not end well.

So I thought, let's go old school. 3-4-3/5-4-1 with Wing backs? Walcott and Gervinho did some solid defensive work last week. And counter attacking with wing backs is quite effective, as they can use their pace to rip through the midfield. Of course, they may need to be replaced by Oxo or Benayoun after an hour or so, as they have to be giving their all.

Our in form three CB's will all get a chance to show their worth, with Koscielny in the centre as TV5 and BFG naturally play on the left and right of the centre anyway. It will also give Kosicelny a chance to go forward.
Of course, Frimpong has to be included after his performance a couple of weeks ago. Him and Song would stay just in front of the back four, so, when defending, we instantly have 7 men behind the ball. This will laso free up Arteta and Ramsey to 'do their thang'.
And Van Persie. You know what he's meant to do.

Anyway, I predict an open match, with Arsenal nicking a 3-2, with VP scoring two and Walcott another.. Player ratings should be uploaded after the game...

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Arsenal vs. West Brom [Ratings]

Ah, well, another routine win.

How long has it been since we've said that! From February to September we were in absolute turmoil, with everyone waiting anxiously for the result of every game, whether it's Barcelona or Shrewsbury. If we carry on this form, and maybe get half of the maximum points against the five other top 6 clubs, then we're well on our way to doing a Chelsea (lol,Chelsea) and mounting a late title challenge.

Well, my stream wasn't great, but here are the ratings:

Sczcesny [6-5]: Consistent, nice to see he didn't rush out again. Mostly had a quiet game, but dealt with the little that came his way.

Jenkinson [7-0]: His crossing is fantastic- if we had a few more men in the box, would have got a few points on fantasy football. Very improved player since that Man U game.

Koscielny [7-0]: Another great performance. Turning out to be an extremely reliable defender, although some ignorant people still call him awful...

Vermaelen [7-5]: Great to have him back, made a very good 'anticipated' block against Tchoyi at 2-0. Excellent goal too.

Santos [6-5]: Positioning needs work, but better defensively and effective going forward.

Song [7-0]: Proper CDM now. Brilliant breaking of the play, good distribution and has a shot on him too.

Arteta [7-5]: I've always rated Arteta. While Song bosses the opposition, Arteta dictates the play. 93 completed passes, and a great finish. Iniesta-like, spreading the play.

Ramsey [7-0]: THIS is our playmaker. He's really come on recently, perhaps from hearing criticism. Of course, there ARE now players to knock him out of the team, like Rosicky and Benayoun, but he's in the starting line up, and deservedly so. Incisive through balls, one that led to the first goal. Has also improved the defensive side of his game, pressing the midfield players.

Walcott [6-5]: Used his pace to great effect, and took the shot which led to the goal. Faded in the second half.

Gervinho [7-0]: Player with a lot of flair, will be a lot more effective than Nasri ever was. Thing about him is he can get in and behind teams who park the bus, which can definitely help us turn those infamous possession filled draws into wins.

RVP [8-0]: Involved in all 3, setting up 2 and scoring the other. True captain, leader, world class player.


Rosicky [6-5]: Involved in the 3rd goal, and a very useful utility player to have.

Benayoun [6-5]: Looked assured on the ball, fantastic work rate.

Arshavin [5-5]: Confidence low again, didn't see too much of the ball.

It has to be noted that these 3 are fantastic to be able to bring on in order to close out a win.

Lastly, here's a stat for you.
In the last 10 games, Arsenal have had 9 different scorers. Man U have had 5, Tott*nham 6. And apparently, we are a one man team.

Heading into the break, then Norwich away, should be comfortable....

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Arsenal vs. Sunderland [Player Ratings]

Woop Woop!

.... is exactly what i was 'wooping' after the match. Last season, we would have either ran out of inspiration and the scoreline would have remained 1-1, or Djourou/Squillaci/(Insert numerous other misfits) would have knocked in an own goal when we took the lead.

But NO! We took the lead! And held on! This is it! Our title charge has begun!

.... Yes it is 11-30 pm and yes, I am full of caffeine. So let's get on with it...

Szczesny [6-5]: Made a couple of brilliant saves to stop Sunderland taking the lead. Couldn't do ANYTHING about the free kick. However, dodgy moment when he rushed out and we nearly conceded.

Jenkinson [6-0]: Gave him an extra 1/2 a point because of his inexperience. Needs to stop being caught out so high up the pitch, and didn't do a good job tracking Larsson. However, decent offensively, with a total of 7 crosses flying in (although only one reached someone).

Big German Guy [6-5]: Won 100% of his aerial battles, which is what we expect him to do. Sound otherwise, not much to do.

Koscielny [7-0]: Excelled in a match where he was under pressure from fans everywhere. Won 6 aerial duels, but kept Sessegnon onside when Szczesny made the error.

Gibbs [6-0]: Meh. Not much to say. Subbed as a precaution.

Song [6-5]: Gave away the ball, and picked up a caution. However, some excellent interceptions and tackles. Hopefully our CDM for years to come.

Arteta [6-0]: Didn't do it for me today. Spread passes around, but hasn't showed the cutting edge that Fabregas had. Did link up pretty well with RVP (aka JESUS) though.

Rosicky [7-5]: Surprise starter, and proved his critics wrong by putting in a dazzling display full of pure energy and determination. THIS is the guy to replace Cesc....

Walcott [5-0]: A spell on the bench would do him good, watching Chamberlain out on the pitch. Very poor today,different position/rotation needed?

Gervinho [6-5]: Good assist for Jesus, and had a good opportunity when he weaved past O'shea. Faded.

Jesus [10-0]: Yep. A 10. What a display. What a way to show you're committed to the club. What goals. What play. What... I could go on and on.


Santos [6-5]: Good display today, made a couple of decent tackles. Showed good discipline in mostly staying in Arsenal's half towards the end (Gibbs may have ventured) but wasted a great shooting opportunity to kill the game.

Arshavin [7-0]: This is the Arshavin of old. Weaving runs galore, and one hopes (oooh, who's being posh?) that this shall rejuvenate him.

Benayoun [6-0]: Good backup/rotation for CAM. Made some decent runs and passes at the end, but I will deduct 1/2 a point for that almost fatal back pass.

Wellity, wellity. That's it. 10th, out of the relegation battle? Stoke next week. Interesting if Ramsey starts...

Friday, October 7, 2011

Arsenal Vs Sp*rs [Analysis]

Well. Another loss. And for some reason I only seem to have written on losses. Why is this? Because THERE'S TOO MANY!  
4 out of the last 7 PL games, we have lost!
And the other 3 matches weren't great either! The only convincing performance was against Bolton, and what would we do with RVP, who's now got an eye on Man City or Barca?

Well, we got 'good' news that Walcott + Gervinho were back, although I thought an Oxo cube may be put into the dish instead. Song was back in CB so Coquelin, half decent in the loss that must not be named, was put in CDM.
 It was a hard fought match, with chances at both ends. Parker and A*eb*yor forced good stops from the Pole in the goal, and our best 1st half chance came for Gervinho, who, after a dazzling run from our saviour, dragged his shot wide from 12 yards out. Surely The Ox could have done better.
 Anyway, some piece of filth clearly hand-balled it before shooting past Szczesny into the net on 40 mins. Having been booked earlier, he ran into the crowd to celebrate. Mike Dean did nothing and I remembered the Van Persie red against Barca.....
 Ramsey, who otherwise had a poor game, finished after Song played it in, minutes after the break. Unheard of S*urs players have a knack of scoring screamer against Arsenal. Unknown player C rifled a 30 yarder powerful, but saveable, shot, through Szczesny's grasp, who otherwise had an excellent game.

Arsenal seemed to fade after that, putting the big German up front, such was the desperation. Arsenal showed glimmers of what they used to be despite the result, but the worst thing was Sagna's injury. He's now out for 3 months, in which Carl Jenkinson (!) will have to step up his game.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The long road of recovery cut short... [Arsenal vs Blackburn Ratings]

Maybe in such a game as this, I should just talk about the first half, and I may sob until my PC overrides with the amount of tears running through its system.

We lined up with the usual 4-2-3-1 / 4-3-3, with Santos replacing Gibbs, and Walcott being dropped to the bench in favour of Gervinho and Arshavin.Surprisingly, no Frimpong, Chamberlain or Jenkinson to be seen.
In general, the first half was great, with Gervinho picking up his first EPL goal after a lovely through ball from Song. Yakubu then nicked a equalizer after Koscielny and Santos played him onside, before Mikel Arteta crashed home a pass from Ramsey on what was, in my opinion, our best play this season.

So here's ho we performed individually:

Sczczczczczczczesny [6-0] : Wasn't at fault for ANY of the goals, and di make some decent stops, but I felt he seemed a bit out of touch today, especiallyat set pieces.

Sagna [6-5] : Tough time against Hoilett, but decent going forward. Went off injured- if it's serious, that's our most reliable defender GONE.

Mertesacker [5-0] : Lack of pace showing through, not living up to what fans expected at the moment. Missed a great chance to nick a draw in the dying stages.

Koscielny [4-0] : Poor. After such a great performance in midweek. Possibly at fault for his own goal, and played Yakubu onside for the first. Too many errors to be on the side.

Santos [5-5] : Yes, did play Yakubu onside for both his goals, but almost made up for it with two sublime crosses in stoppage time. Not the best debut.

Song [6-5] : Brilliant in the first half, where he got an assist and carried on his great vein of form. Faded, before being subbed for Chamakh.

Arteta [6-5] : Great goal, good to see we've got a Fabregas-esque player in the side. However, like his previous games, faded in the second half. Trend developing here.

Ramsey [6-0] : Good assist, and looked much better in the first half, but, you've guessed it, faded.

Arshavin [6-5] : He seems to be slowly regaining confidence and form. Surprise pick ahead of Theo, and looked a rejuvenated player in the first half, before.......................... FADING.

Gervinho [6-5] : Nice to see him back in the side, lots of moments of brilliance, but was much too greedy on the ball in the second half.

Van Persie [6-0] : Worked very hard, but still anonymous when being deployed alone. Much better when he played in a 4-4-2. Great ball in for Chamakh.


Djourou [3-5] : Would have much rather seen someone else, ANYONE, come on at right back. Let Hoilett thorugh for the fourth with a missed tackle.

Walcott [6-5] : Bit of a wake up call, being dropped. Came on and looked lively, and his pace means he's great as an impact player.

Chamakh [6-5] : Finally got the confidence boosting goal we've all been waiting for! Big fan of this dude, love to see him play in a 4-4-2 with RVP.

So, that's that. Slipping further down the league, as usual. Bolton at home next, be interesting. I predict a 2-2 draw, Gary Cahill losing his marker, Mertesacker, and netting from a set piece, showing us what we're missing.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Arsenal 2-8 Manchester United : Reaction and Analysis

Right, first off, this is my first blog post, or 'ramble'. I was hoping to be positive and be writing about a shock win that happened at Old Trafford, rated in many Gooner's minds as up there with the Barcelona victory.

Unfortunately, I said I would post when I'm either "pissed off or ecstatic", and today, this post won't be the latter.

So, here's an opinion on the aspects of the team, and of course, Wenger:


Eh. Sczczczczczesny wasn't at his best. And at a time where we needed a performance like against Udinese. Possibly at fault for the first goal. And bewildered at the fourth, Rooney's free kick. 
Did make some good saves though.


Abysmal. Ok, ok, Sagna, Vermaelen and Gibbs out, and Koscielny just returning from injury. But seriously. I was just beginning to think our defence was slowly beginning to sort itself out after a dismal 2010-11. And then this goes and happens. I won't highlight all the goals, because that will just depress me and all you lot. The one goal I will highlight is the first. The defence was looking ok up till then, before Djourou and Koscielny cocked up in an almost familiar manner, before allowing Welbeck to head home. Ugh, that goal knocked all the positivity out of me. Reminded me of the famous saying, directed primarily at us. TWO WORDS. CAN'T DEFEND.


To be perfectly honest, they weren't great, but they can't be blamed for the result. Coquelin held his own, before the team imploded after he was taken off.
 I was impressed by Rosicky. I concede that I am a big fan off this guy, and his incisive passing further upped my opinion of him. His assist to Walcott was superb, and an immaculate chipped through ball to Van Persie could have sparked a comeback, had it have been buried.
 Once again, I was not impressed by Ramsey. You have to feel sorry for him. A replacement for Cesc? Never. Has to still be a deputy while another signing (I wish) 'mentors' him. I would replace him with Jack as soon as we can. 


A mixed reaction. Lets start with the bad.
 Arshavin. Enough said. What is up with this dude? He could have been a star, a captain ,a PFA player. He just seems so uninterested and lazy. However, he did test De Gea a few times from long range, something NO other Arsenal player seems to do. Missed an open goal after a mazy run to put us back in the game.
 I was also disappointed with RVP. The only ray of hope in a crumbling mess, and he wasn't there today. Missed the crucial penalty, which would have put us level and boosted our confidence. Also missed a great chance from Rosicky's chip. A decent consolation goal, but not impressed.
Walcott was his usual. Started brightly and faded badly. Won the penalty and scored, although it was only past De Gea. Wasted his chances.


In Arsene we trust. 
A saying I have gone by ever since I supported this club, six years ago. Made a terrible mistake in the subs department, bringing off the only recognised CDM, to be replaced by a teenager making his debut. Should have reverted to a 4-4-2 at the break, bringing Ramsey off and Chamakh on.
I'm not even going to go into what he should have done this summer, because you ALL know what.

Oh well, that's me done. I'll be posting the player ratings when we get a new signing, so possibly tomorrow.