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RefWatch – Bolton Wanderers v Arsenal (24/04/2011 16:00)

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RefWatch – Bolton Wanderers v Arsenal (24/04/2011 16:00)

By DogFace

  • Referee:              Mike Jones
  • Assistant 1:         Dave Bryan
  • Assistant 2:         Patrick Keane
  • 4th Official:        Chris Foy

Good afternoon stat-fans and welcome to RefWatch.  [Actually the original copy from Dogface said "Good morning" but I got up very late today, so it is afternoon.  Sorry. Tony]

Let’s have a look at Referee:

  • Full name:                          Mike Jones
  • Date of birth:                     18 April 1968 (1968-04-18) (age 43)
  • Place of birth:                   Chester, Cheshire, England
  • EPL Referee Since:          2008/2009
  • EPL Games to date:         55

Remind me again Andy, who’s supposed to win this one..?

Mike Jones hasn’t been too bad for us in the 5 matches he’s been at the whistle.  The 4th official today is Chris Foy – who also has, statistically, given us a fair crack of the whip.  As the end of this season draws nigh we should stop and wonder as to who is supposed to finish where and, indeed, how close and/or spectacular the league will get before the champion is crowned.


Mike Jones has had 6 games for Bolton Wanderers consisting of 0 wins, 2 draws and 4 losses

Bolton Wanderers are currently in 14th in Mike Jones’s personal Points Per Game League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, with an average of 0.33 PPG.

In Mike Jones’s personal Handicap Swing League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, Bolton Wanderers come 11th with an average negative swing of -0.58.

Bolton Wanderers are currently in 9th in Mike Jones’s personal Booking’s Per Match League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, with an overall average of 2.00 BPM.

In Mike Jones’s personal Fouls Per Booking League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, Bolton Wanderers come 2nd with an overall average of 8.25 FPB.

Mike Jones has had 5 games for Arsenal consisting of 4 wins, 1 draw and 0 losses

Arsenal are currently in 1st in Mike Jones’s personal Points Per Game League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, with an average of 2.60 PPG.

In Mike Jones’s personal Handicap Swing League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, Arsenal come 1st with an average positive swing of 2.10.

Arsenal are currently in 4th in Mike Jones’s personal Booking’s Per Match League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, with an overall average of 1.40 BPM.

In Mike Jones’s personal Fouls Per Booking League (for teams with a minimum of 5 matches played), for matches in the English Premier, Arsenal come 9th with an overall average of 6.57 FPB.



What’s curious in the chart above is (Liverpool aside) the adherence to the Asian Handicap this season… a little over/under as you might expect – although I would say that this is more the exception than the rule.  I think I should also start modelling the betting line for the number of goals scored as I’m starting to get a little suspicious about how closely referee performance correlates to the Asian Black markets.

The other major consideration, I would say, would be the day/time the match is played… if we consider that the amount of money on a match could have an effect on the result – then playing other than 15:00 on a Saturday afternoon would put a greater focus and economic expectation as to that result.  It is fair to say that, if we assume that the EPL is fixed, then it is likely that the matches with the greatest audience would be the most fixed.

We will play this match at 23:00 Singapore time – the only EPL match that day.

The Unbeaten Run

The Injury Index

Untold Arsenal Index

History of Arsenal including the series on the failures of Herbert Chapman

Making the Arsenal - the book of Arsenal death and rebirth

153 comments to RefWatch – Bolton Wanderers v Arsenal (24/04/2011 16:00)

  • avatar Sammy The Snake

    Let’s Kick some butt!
    6-1 to the Arsenal.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Think we will get a positive response from Arsenal up here.
    Speaking on refs, did anyone notice the similarity of Rio running into a player yesterday – with the per Eboue gave away against Pool? On MOTD, looked a clear pen, certainly on the Eboue precedent however with a game at 0-0 at OT, with Utd going for the title and Peter Walton being the ref (the guy who let Utd off the hook at Blackpool) – I guess nothing was destined to happen.
    I think Utd/the refs now have it pretty much wrapped up, so hopefully we can get some fair refs from now on in and maybe the team can build some confidence

  • avatar Phil

    Performing way above the handicap there… bodes well!

  • avatar bob

    Contexts, anyone? Just to deepen/broaden/thicken the stew, er, plot, I found most interesting today’s Independent’s article on the overlapping spheres of interest (borderline conflicts of interest) at the top of the EPL, the Committee on Sport, the Olympics 2018, and past and future conspirees to be most illuminating. As UA/our ref forecasts and considerations occur against an ongoing, accumulating backdrop of inquiry, I offer a link to the article. Perhaps it will come to clarify past, present or future decisions, high and low, to be: http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/premier-league/premier-league-chairmans-role-under-fresh-scrutiny-2274144.html
    Perhaps Sir Dave of Sheffield and Sir Fergus of Manure and Sir Malfeasance atop the Referee Cabal have/have had fingers in a demonstrable pot? Conspiracy theory? No! First hypothesizing, then theorizing, then evidence. As for Sir Dave’s son’s firm, called GLUE (you can’t make it up) is an apt name for some dicey interconnections yet to surface. Can such context play out on the pitch itself – an influence on calls made or not made – on behalf of Brand Fergus, for one, remains to be seen. But the thought is thinkable, and it all starts with a working hypothesis as in: Could the ref’s decisions (made/unmade) have patterns? Well, many of us are breathless for Walter’s post-season analysis. The joys of UA is that we can breathe together and consider such like. (By the way, the Latin for to breathe together is Conspirare. Guilty as charged your honor!)

  • avatar bob

    @Dogface,
    Cheers for your ongoing great works and (often, too true to be good!) prognostications. Perhaps your Asian Handicaps and Sir Dave’s son’s GLUE (see my posting above) might come to have some over-lappings from the current gathering inquiries. (Now “That would be something, it really would be something…” Sir Paul McCartney sang it so well!)
    We should keep an unblinking eye on possible implications for pitch decision patterns. We love your work, Dogface. Keep on keepin’ on.

  • avatar Alek

    “12mins: Kevin Davies absolutely ploughs into Song, arriving slightly after the ball had departed. A disgraceful challenge, though not quite a red card. The referee doesn’t even book him. Utter madness.”

    This is from http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2011/apr/24/bolton-wanderers-arsenal-live

  • avatar Alek

    “11′

    Now Davies is late on Song, a terrible tackle, and he gets a word and no cards. Poor refereeing. Song needs treatment. Van Persie not happy.

    12′

    The referee made a rod for his own back with that early booking. Had he not carded Muamba, then he could happily have carded Davies and set the benchmark for the game. Now he just looks stupid.”

    This is from http://soccernet.espn.go.com/commentary?id=293037&cc=5739

  • avatar Sammy The Snake

    Well, we are once again somebody’s pick me up!

    1 win in 9 games. End of season jitters.

    Groundhog season. I tell ya…

    Let’s start fighting for 3rd place.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    I try and back the team – but getting so hard to defend things.
    What has gone wrong? Gutted. We should have easily won that game.
    We need to change something, not Wenger but something.
    The ref was a disgrace on all levels

  • avatar Sammy The Snake

    Was Wenger talking about mental strength? Unbeaten run?! Yeh…

  • avatar goonergerry

    This is not the day the earth stood still- its the day when Bolton were better then us. I hate football sometimes. I have to give this up. It is too much this time. I HATE BOLTON

  • avatar Sammy The Snake

    Was that 2 goals conceded from 3 corners?!!

  • avatar Dark Prince

    No, that was 2 goals conceded bcoz our defenders still not learnin how to defend set pieces.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Wasn’t this site itself talkin about the unbeaten run few days back?? ‘Pride comes before a fall’

    Thats why i say, we should look at the negatives and try to rectify them rather than look at the positives and not do anything.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    If Wenger does not get in a defence coach, I might start thinking about joining the dark side! A top team CANNOT defend like that.
    That was ridiculous.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Ridiculous penalty decision, especially after walcotts clear shout in the first half( which has only been replayed once,- we had another claim in tyhe 2nd half whichhas not been repklayed atall so not sure if this was genuine)). Great fight back after and I thought we played great after the pen save but nasri missed chances was the dissapointing killer. Its just typical that they get that goal at the end to allow all the aaa world to now kick us when were are supposedly down for the rest of the week. Mike jones and especially the assistant ( same one who gave the pen against clichy @ old trafford) continued in the usual vein against us this season. Well done for being so fucking predictable. I’m also so sick of the biased commentary I have to turn it off now. Its a complete joke.
    lets see how how tottenhams end of season collapse is received by these fuckers compared to ours.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Yes our defense is a bit shaky atm but has done pretty well most of the season and will improve next season and onwards as the players gel and get more experience together. but you have to take your chances esp when we create the ammount of clear ones we had today. Thats the way we play, and when any team miss’s sitters it will can be susceptible to a goal out of nothing.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    “it has done pretty well most of d season”?? We have now conceded 60% of our goals directly or indirectly bcoz of set pieces…that says a lot about our defending.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Because we aint let that many in open play

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Im not saying the defense can’t improve, just that these teams will score goals against you , so if you miss your chances you are at risk. Its the same for any team in any game. You also need the blatant penalties and sendings off to be ‘spotted’ too of course but we’re never gona get that while wengers there are we

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Unfortunately this team have become the self fulfilling prophesy all the negative fans have wished on it. We could now even face a battle for 4th if not careful.
    This team have been through too much and it has affected them badly. It is now becoming obvious that more experienced players should have been retained / bought in.
    Hopefully for some, a summer break will be all that is needed. I fear others could be scarred beyond that. Wenger will have to earn his money this summer.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    y do our opponents need to score against us in open play if they know they can easilysbore against us in set pieces??

  • avatar Mr Venger

    We are constantly fighting a shit storm whether we play well, badly , or are just unlucky. there’s always somecontroversy and i think over the season it takes its toll on the entire club including the fans, many of whom seem to jump on the bandwagons against this team

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Nice one dp. Teams don’t even try in open play. they all hang around in the box waiting for corners! Brilliant

  • avatar Dark Prince

    We should have actually not sold out our experienced players so swiftly. Having the likes of Viera or Henry would have helped a lot to the younger players to gain experience n knowledge which they currently cant obtain. That has been one our youth policy’s main problem. Youth players need experienced players to guide them.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    That exactly what happens mr venger. Teams are looking out for corners or any type of opportunity to cross into our box bcoz they know that is our weakness. The frustrating part is that this is happenin for a long time and the management is not able to rectify it from such a long time.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    think the aim of the project was to keep a few of the old warriors to help the kids, not sure what happened – if they just wanted to leave or if our banker made suggestions. Whatever reason, we let some go to easily without immediatly adequate replacements and looks like we are paying for it – these implosions seem to prove it.
    It seems to have left a big experience vacume – cannot think of a better way of expressing it- as Cesc has recently mentioned.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    I think we can all see that, but its not practical to think that those players would have stayed @ arsenal to warm the bench. They are world footballers ,not local lads from Hertfordshire so were always going to move on at the end. We also had a difficult time with money at that point with the stadium move and hgad difficulty paying massive wages to those players, so had to start a new cycle which is incredibly difficult. We are really close and will improve again next season if the club and fans keep together. These players will be the most exerienced in the league v soon, ferdinand, lampard et al havent got long left. then they will be able to pass something on to the next generation which will make it easier in the future. Just need to realise our potential at the end of the season and get something in the bag to shut the world up.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Yes, Cesc had talked about it in his controversial interview. He did make a valid point.

    The point is not of going out there and buying experienced players, its about having experienced Arsenal players in the team. Players who have played with us a long time. Experienced Players who know more about Arsenal’s values and can pass it on to the new generation.

    Really dont kno how we’ll rectify this problem now.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Yes I can see ( like I just said) that we can improve in that area but you don’t acknowledge that our defending in open play is also a great strength. We are not that bad overall as a defense and should improve again nxt season.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    One very important issue is not only just about opponents using using set pieces, for many games now i’ve seen that opponents have started to use the ‘pressing’ game very effectively against us. Liverpool, spurs, west brom, and today bolton. No one allowed us the room in midfield. They all start pressing at our defence.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Even with all these reactions ( no experience, cant defend set pieces etc) and the difficulty we have with biased officialdom we are really close and just need that little bit more. To turn the last 3 games into wins does not require a massive change, just the nack of capitalising at the right time.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Liver pool? They sat in their own box for 90% of the game!

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Its also easier to ‘press’ against a team if you have had a weeks rest comperd to 3days which is what we also have to contend (for some reason )with a lot more than most teams during the season.
    I’d like to see some stats on this over the season between the top 4 teams especially

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Mr Venger, overall we aren’t bad. But do we have as resolute defence as Chelsea or ManU?? i dont think so.

    It eventually comes down to whether we’re fighting for the title or not. If we’re fighting for it then it should be a resolute defence without any weaknesses. If we look today, we cant find any visible weaknesses in ManU or Chelsea’s defence. I admit they concede goals, but opponents dont target any particular part of their defensive traits unlike Arsenal where opponents will test us on crosses and set pieces and aerial battles.

  • avatar GoonerVance

    Today the defense looked lost no matter what the situation. How many times did Lee and Elmander get in behind us? A complete switch off.

    Wenger look disheveled at the moment, he is OCD with that water bottle. He takes off the label in the first half and picks off the parts of the label that didn’t come clean off. Then he repeatedly twists the cap of the bottle without having actually taken a drink from it. Of course, he also uses the bottle as a projectile.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Never thought I’d say this, but I’d actually love it if Chelsea could stop the mancs. Just for the sake of all the decisions that have gone their way this season, I would feel some kind of justice has been done in the end

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Chelsea defense is the best in the league this season thats true. But Did you see Ferdinand trying to catch up with Anichebe yesterday?? He was running on the spot! If that was koscielny or djouro you know it would have been a penalty. Their weaknesses arent exposed as much as ours for reasons that fall outside of what Wenger or any one at arseanl can control.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Defensive stats may say one thing, but this team are masters at giving away goals at the worst possible moment. That will be down to nerves and confidence. And in those terms this team is shot to pieces.
    Yes, we will soon have some of the most experienced players in the league as the Lampards, Scholes , Giggs et al grow older – but they will be replaced by experience, not just youth.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Playing 3 days before has nothing to do on how we defend in set pieces. I think its more of a coachin problem where our players are not trained to deal with tactics which will be used against us. Look at how our players cross…none of them can cross properly. I think even thats one of the things which is not learned during training bcoz i guess we’re learnin too much of passing that we forget to prepare ourselves for plan b of crossin to Chamakh/bendtner.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Thing is I agree we can improve ( mainly by keeping these players together) but they have been slagged off at the back even when they have been playing very well. Now they look a bit shaky or have a slight loss of confidence and everyone jumps on them even more. I accept it when they play badly ( like today ) but they deserve more recognition when they play well too, if only from our fans thats enough for me

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Experience takes yrs to aquire mandy, no matter how many palyers like david luiz you buy you cant give them premiership experience without giving them time

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Dp, I wasn’t equating the 3 days rest in any way to the set plays, just to the pressing game

  • avatar mikeyb

    Meltdown for Wenger. And he’s got no-one else to blame but himself. If he doesn’t sort out what’s so blindingly obvious – i.e. a keeper, a commanding CB, some steel in the middle, a striker who can finish and, most importantly, a leader, he’ll never win anything again. Your project is not working Wenger – every man and his hamster can see that. Open your eyes for once.

  • avatar mikeyb

    I get really embarrassed at the way Wenger acts, for the amount he has done for AFC i will forever look at him with respect and admiration, but at the moment, he acts and looks like a fool! He needs to move into a deeper managerial position and we need a more pro-active coach to balance his weaknesses, a coach who had a bigger hunger to win, a coach to address our defense, our issue of dead weight players, the team mentality and balance wengers passing mentality with some old school arsenal counte attacking flair! This is probably a wish that wont come true but i really just needed to get that out!

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Lets get behind the lads for nxt wknd now, a great chance to recover some pride?

  • avatar Dark Prince

    “Their weaknesses aren’t exposed as much”- its bcoz they dont have any proper weakness. But we have a weakness, and teams will target our weakness time and time again. Even Owen Coyle who is known for his better football style of play has targeted our weakness. Today we just have few of them, tomorrow we’ll have all of the teams doing that. Then what?? Its better to train and get prepared for such things.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Mikeyb
    Are you Alan Greene in disguise

  • avatar Mr Venger

    So you think that only being able to run at about 5 miles an hour ( Ferdinand )isnt a weakness?? How about the ammount of time this season Vidic has lunged in? Oh sorry thats not a weaknes because the referee lets him get away with it basically EVERY time. We do not get away with anything, so our weaknesses are exposed to a much higher degree. I dont beleive Man utd defense is much better than ours. Vidic has held them together so many times, so those sendings off he gets away with make a MASSIVE difference

  • avatar Dgeoel

    The more I watch the EPL the I’m convinced it’s fixed. Davies and Muamba commit yellow card fouls and they are not booked while similar or lesser offenses earn them cards. The penalty award against Djourou is less obvious than the 2 not given against Man U yesterday. I suspect the players are aware of these biases and are broken.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    We need the players to just accept these decisions and concentrate 100% on the game, or start kicking some ass ! ike keown and the boys used to do when the sense of injustice was there. At the moment we try to behave well and not surround the ref etc but you can see that it affects the team , just buy the players facial expression when these decisions go against us. At the moment evry one loves it when we get treated lkike this and tney see it as a way to get to us, and its working!

  • avatar Dark Prince

    What the refs do or not do have nothing to do with our or their defensive weaknesses. Ferdinand and Vidic are overall resolute defenders. Our defenders on the other hand are better readers of the game. They’re superb at interceptions. But when it comes to the more physical side of the game, they’ll be less effective than a Vidic or Ferdinand. And while playing in England, you’ll be facing more of physical battles than passing battles. That is why Arsenal’s current side can only take them to certain level. Beyond that, the physicality gets to them, the aerial battles are lost.

    Thats the difference we have of our Invincible side and our current side. Our Invincibles played very superb football and had physicality also to compliment with it. But now its too much depended on passing. Thats not gonna work in England.

  • avatar GoonerVance

    Muamba was booked too quickly for his first offense and so he was shown mercy on the second, more egregious foul, IMO, and then Davies wasn’t booked because he’s one of the good ol’ English lads, which I fear hurts Arsenal a lot(not having enough English players). If we had more English players maybe we’d get more decisions. Nothing we could complain about today though on the goals, we just switched off.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    If passing doesnt work in the English league, then there’s somethinng wrong with it. I think you just summed up why the English team will never win a trophy!

  • avatar DC

    For all of the frustration and disappointment we feel, I don’t think it’s any more than what Arsene feels and has felt since the 24th February at the Carling Cup Final – you just need to physically look at him of late to see that!
    He has been let down very badly by several players that he had put alot of faith in and rated much higher, and whether that’s because they haven’t proved to be good enough, too inexperienced and tactically naive, or just can’t be bothered, is now clear to him and all of us fans!
    Getting rid of this expensive deadwood, or loaning them out if he still believes in them, in exchange for those with more “hunger, desire and fight”, will almost certainly happen this post-season! Arsene’s health cannot tolerate this failure any longer and he, and Kroenke, won’t let it go on any longer when they are so close! All of this season’s painful disappointments will prove, in hindsight, to be the final pieces of Arsene’s project and whoever takes over next, and i expect it to be Guardiola if his back operations goes well, will continue it! We’re all extremely disappointed right now but we should keep the faith and convey our disappointment with a modicum of hope and reflection of the bigger picture!

  • avatar Mr Venger

    I agree with your points dp re the physicality of Ferdinand etc. But he was not always like that. he has learned that way through EXPERIENCE! The cb we have are capable to gain that side and are better competitors than he was at their current ages. Coupled with how well they read the game, they will be exeptional.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    It does seem to be working. Utd could have had 2 pens against them yesterday but never happens.Theire ref was the one who let them away with it at Blackpool. Just have a feeling we were not going to be allowed to win much this year, and what we really should have won, we messed up in the most spectacular fashion. Maybe some fans, and players are too weak to get over the CC!
    This team will have to become good enough to beat the opposition, the refs, some of our own fans and the media. Wenger can do this,he has done it before but not without an addition or two.
    Wenger, next year, stuff budgets, principals, youth policies, football romanticism – go out and win at all costs, shut a few up, you have to do it very soon, one day it will be too late as you well know
    Maybe he needs to use the black arts a bit more – works for Fergie and Jose, win at all costs – it is a game… and to hell with morality, decency and Corinthian values. I know what I would be thinking in his shoes at the moment but Wenger probably operates on a higher plane than myself…or Jose or Fergie

  • avatar bob

    Methinks that defending set-pieces means having strikers in practice sessions that shoot in the way that they are being taken against us like today and so often. We don’t have that kind of striker, so how can we actually have practice sessions against that problem. I don’t believe that the practice sessions on set pieces have been valid preparation for the real game. Otherwise, how has this become so chronic a problem as EVERYONE knows. I love Arsene, but this is surely a blind spot, or one not rectified in January because he expected Vermallen back (or did he?). I can’t speak with enough knowledge, but it strikes me that clinical finishing can be worked on, but we need people with more deadly clinical skills and a willingness to shoot from outside the box. Can this be taught? Drafted? I don’t know, but the profligacy and lack of clinical touches from most of our offense, too often, seems like the second major area to upgrade. Does this mean hiring both a defensive and offensive specialist to be hired and there on the bench, or is this intolerable to Arsene’s sense of being in charge? If he could have seen these in January, and many believe he saw the flaws, then the gamble he took by not buying was a terrible gamble and he/we lost. Many were saying so at the time. Hence the widespread perception of his stubbornness (unless the Board has him on an undisclosed leash, which we don’t really know either way). If he did not see these issues in January, that is an even more serious problem than not spending, because it means he’s lost it. This is a full blown crisis, and I count myself among the loyal opposition that want Arsene to change, as the platitudes have now worn too thin to bear. That said, there remains an “outside” crisis: the viciously bent refereeing, which shows the depth of what Arsenal faces going forward. But the bent refereeing does not negate or totally explain the problems of our side. I’m no expert, this is what I see, and I only hope that those who hold the purse-strings are not so cynical as to string us along and make no changes. I don’t think Arsene or the fans could or would bear another season without serious change to create a balance between serious experienced and pricey (if need be) players along with seriously talented young players from within the ranks. I don’t see players like Cesc or Van Persie putting up with more on-the-job training (however talented) as they grow longer in the tooth without trophies. Let us think, together, in depth, about this moment and not settle for anyone’s (fans or management’s) positive or negative platitudes instead of the serious analysis that this moment calls for.

  • avatar Gooner80

    in fairness to the defence it has stayed pretty much at the same level as last year it has been the attack that has been the problem.

    Today was heart breaking, we have hit a bad patch at the wrong time

    I try and keep things in perspective but I cant really see improvement or at least no measurable improvement, and in actual fact we had worse injuries last year but performed better. I love my Club and to me it feels the whole world is having a good old laugh at arsenal and thats what hurts the most.

    where do we go from here?? probably beat Man u but it will be too little too late

  • avatar Dark Prince

    I think its more about the type of football a team plays. Its not wise to always play a physical team or always play a technical passing team. It should always be a combination of both. Look at all the EPL Winners of last decade. They had both technicality of physicality in them.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    There’s definite improvements ; kos, djouro, look like great long term additions, roger chesney in goal, Fabianski was great before his injury, Nasri moved to another level overall, Chamakh looks a great addittion, Wilshere= fucking superb, sagna has been back to his best, van persie looks stable, Walcott improved, clichly’s crosses are getting above 3 ft at last.
    Sadly the main negative has been, vermealan injury & Cesc. He really has not been influencial since everton @ home, all those months ago. We also have not had bendnter to chip in & score important goals this season for some reason

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Also the mexican has been a big let down, I reckon Wenger expected 10-15 goals from him this season after eduardo left this was a chance for him

  • avatar Mr Venger

    We could do with a bit more physical strength , but more in midfield than at the back imo. If only Diaby wasnt physically ruined

  • avatar Gooner80

    @Mr Wenger

    I meant quantifiable improvements

  • avatar Sammy The Snake

    Gunner’s 2nd position has flattered us so long. We were second because Chelsea were messing up, not because we were great.

    AW on the sidelines is a source of anxiety for the team these days. He is full of stress, and he’s transferring his stress to the team. This is instead of pushing the team on…

    So hard to be supportive now, but we’ve got to back every Gunner. Win, lose or draw, Gooner till I die.

  • avatar bob

    @Mr. Venger: when Bendtner scored last season, did he play in the same positions as he has been played in this season? If the positions were different, and the results are so different, then the obvious question has to be posed to Arsene on this. Bendtner continually protests that he is being played out of position. Was it different last season? This is not about his ego or Arsene’s ego. This is about squandering resources or maximizing them. It seems to me that we can examine the “for some reason” that you bring up in your posting. Like Nick or loathe him, does his complaint square with where and how he was played last season? Have we lost a lot of goals by his not being better positioned by Arsene? Or is he just an ego-driven windbag as so many like to believe as we usher him out the door? I don’t know. Do you?

  • avatar Gooner80

    All the injuries were much worse last year and you can argue improvements to the cows come home but these are really subjective arguments. IMO some players have stepped up this year but almost for every player that steps up there is a player that has stepped back

  • avatar Shard

    @bob

    Exactly.. Great post. We need to reflect on our weaknesses. As you say there is an outside crisis. That makes it harder to deal with the inside crisis. But it needs to be done.

    how anyone can say that Arsene doesn’t care about winning is beyond me. I don’t think he’s too stubborn either. Of course he’s stubborn but I think he’s open to ideas too. I hope he brings Keown back. It helped in our run to the final of the Champions league, and we really really need to be more effective on set pieces, at both ends, as well as improve defensively in general. This summer should be interesting. It is in a sense Arsene’s biggest test. Even today he would not come out and publicly chastise his players. Will he make the necessary changes to take the next step? I suspect he will.

    For me, it’s not about the 6 years at all. It is about this year only, coupled with the fact that the players we have have had enough chance to learn and grow. Some quite clearly haven’t, and they have to be let go. Some additions, some coaching additions too, and just some bloody fight. To the point of turning into cynical, cheating bastards if required at times. As Walter said, we are just too nice.

    @DC
    I’m still not convinced that Guardiola is the real deal. If people think Wenger is tactically weak, we are yet to see anything like a change in tactics from Guardiola. He’s managing such a fantastic team, and while he can in no way be denied credit for it, as I said, I’m not convinced yet. Besides, I think he’s planning on going to ManU. Not us.

  • avatar bob

    @Mr. Venger: what you call “the mexican”‘s name is Carlos Vela. Perhaps you’d not sling that ethnic club if you consider how well Fergie’s Hernandez has done in this, his first season. Vela may yet get strengthening and size that he can put to better use, but who knows. My objection is the way we take to ethnic labels in our anger at losing our way.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    The reason I said ‘for some reason’ is exactly because as you highlighted, there is a big enough debate to be had abou that alone. I dont think you can drop Van persie for Nick tho. But from the outside it does appear there has been a problem between him & the manager this season

  • avatar Dark Prince

    We do have some good players. We have improved a lot, but the improvement has only been on individual basis, not as a team. The players hav improved but the overall team performance is still at the same level it was last year. Our problems from last year like conceding via set pieces, counter attackin gettin to us, our final third decision making and injuries. All these problems were there last year and its there this year too. Thats the worry.

    Do we need to buy a defender?? I really dont know. I’m more concerned whether they are trained to manage the English style of attack. If our defenders learn that then i dont think we need to buy any defender.

    Do we need to buy any attacking players?? I think yes.
    We seriously lack depth in this place. We need impact players on the bench. Arshavin has clearly lost his pace. Bendtner and Chamakh aren’t the type of impact players that opponents wil fear. Plus i’d admit that Chamakh is a superb signing. But our style isn’t made for him. His main USP is his headers and we dont utilise this strength of his simply bcoz we like to pass more and our crosses are pathetic.

    What also needs to change is our attacking formation. I think we have to stop using this 4-3-3 combo simply bcoz we dont have proper wingers, Walcot and Nasri are not proper wingers.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Ethnic club? Slight overreaction Bob. Since when is calling someone a Mexican a slight?? It has nothing to do with anger. And for you info Bob, Thats exactly why I marked it down as an even more obvious dissapointment ( the fact that Hernandes has performed so well). Vela has all the talent but has not made the most of it. At least he got 90 m ins in and played ok yesterday but you have to question why hes underachieved

  • avatar Johnny Deigh

    The ref was horribly biased. I was almost certain that he would blow the whistle a few seconds after 5 minutes even though they had made a substitution during injury time and had a somewhat lengthy celebration after their goal, not to mention random time-wasting. Ref should had played an extra minute at least.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Dp, If you look back at last season, we have definitley improved defensively. We do not get caught on the break anywhere near as badly. That was a major weakness last season

  • avatar Gooner80

    I think B52 is gone this year.

    Arsene is a great great man and I hate to see him like this, it is going to be another sleepless night for him. I think the arsenal fans have to take some responsibility for how the players have performed this year, there is quite clearly much better away support than home support. If carlsberg made fans they wouldnt make fans like ours.

    what a F**king disgrace, we have mediocre fans, and their or some of their support as transmitted on to the pitch, I am blaming the fans, if you are going to go to a game and not support even when things are bad, just sell the ticket to a good owner you would make some money because we dont need your sort at the Ems, I swear there is spurs fans at the ems, they changed to arsenal when wenger came and have infiltrated every part of arsenal even untold Im sure there is some Spurs fans on here

  • avatar Mr Venger

    I’m not too concerned defensively, obviously set pieces but we can improve on that. Chelsea won the league last season and were one of the highest conceders on that front. I agree that we need more pace in attack.
    It was quite encouraging to see van persie playing off Chamack in the 2nd half, looks to have potential.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Mr Venger, why Vela has underachieved is bcoz of the same reason. You wont excell too much in England just being completly technical. Thats what happened to Vela. Look at the difference in Vela and Hernandez. Vela is completly technical and Hernandez is somewhat like Rooney who can hustle. Players like Vela are out suited to EPL style. Compare Vela to Wilshere who is technically as much gifted but knows what physicality is. If vela was in Spain, then he would have excelled more.

  • avatar Gooner80

    @DP

    in agreement with you last post

  • avatar Mr Venger

    I love your passion Gooner 80! Tell the plastics where to go!

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Mr Venger, we still get caught on the break. Its how Chelsea and Manu have beaten us before and this year also. Also West brom home game too was an example. So it still is a concern.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    I can see that , but thats why its even more dissapointing!
    If all he has to do is try a bit harder physically, wtf??
    Don tell me bergkamp wasnt a technical player, or pires? they all adapted and did what was needed. Vela doesn’t seem interested. I’m willing to give anther chance but so far thumbs down

  • avatar RedGooner

    We have all summer to worry over what needs to be done.
    We will be back in the champs league again next season we might as well just enjoy the last few matches.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Man u away but not a regular occurrence. You will concede some goals on the break over the course of a season, but it has not been an issue

  • avatar Shard

    I agree with Mr Venger in that regard. It still happens at times, but largely we have improved on that front. We need some pace in attack, and we need another Eduardo. A pure finisher.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    yes you’re right, Bergkamp, Pires and even Henry were completly technical players. But they didn’t hesitate to show their physicality. The best example is Fabregas himself. He too is completly technical but he’s not afraid to make that bad tackle when its needed. Dont know what exactly is the problem with Vela, whether its that our academy dont really teach the youngsters to become physical in their game or whether its got to do with experience, but whatever it is, some of our players are not as comfortable in being physical. For christ sakes, its Football, its a contact sports. You need to be physically ready.

  • avatar Gooner80

    *******************HAVE YOU THOUGHT ABOUT THIS**********

    I know it is not so current but I still remember how Wenger was treated at Old trafford, he has been seriously abused: by the board, by the media, by our opponents and worst of all by OUR OWN FANS

    OUR OWN FANS

    what a dignified man, He is the messiah of arsenal and people are building his crucifix and when he is nailed onto that cross he will say “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing”

    Our messiah came on the arsenal bus into town with a double, he has performed miracles like turning a £500,00 player into £25 million , he has won the double, he has gone without defeat, his disciples have spread his good word, but then came the Roman with his 20 pieces of silver and judas gave him the betrayed kiss this being ashley cole.

    Our messiah is here and we do not realise it, He is gogin to be crucified by his own people, they will cry

    “crucify him”
    “crucify him”

    and the board may bow down to the people

    Happy easter to all those fake arsenal supporters go ahead crucify our messiah, when he is resurrected at another club, maybe just maybe you will know WHAT YOU HAVE DONE. ARSENE IS ARSENAL

    these words have just rolled off my lips happy easter

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Basically DP if as you say we concede 60% of our goals from set pieces, surely some improvement here coupled with some more pacy attacking options / goal threat, we will be very close nxt yr, whether or not we play ‘continental’ (in my opinion, better ) style football.

    One question, why do we in GB see the rest of the world as being inferior for not naturally being able to play’British style’ physical football?? is it not us who are wrong??

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Gooner 80, there certainly are Spurs fans who find their way on here, onto the Arsenal hating blogs and into the mainstream media but dont know why they bother- they have their own problems – and if they think Wenger is in a crisis, they may wish to wait a few months and take a look at their own manager.
    Agree that Wenger is not in a great place – maybe off the field things going on as well – who knows and this may well be transmitting itself to the team. This team look almost like they have not been training properly in the last few weeks, again I suspect we may hear things in a few months time that may explain a few things, and there will be changes accordingly.
    Something is badly wrong – I do not think the players have lost quality but there are issues here. It is almost as if they are trying too hard but yet are misdirected, or not directed at all in some way. Nerves, constant bad decisions confidence or something else?
    We may as well back this team as the majority will hopefully be with us next year, but other things will have to undergo major improvement.They have not become poor players overnight but it is clear something is up.
    And yes, some of our fans are brittle, weak minded, fickle – in fact everything they accuse the team of being. I do not believe in terrace violence but fair play to the true Gooners who have at least verbally taken on the howling mob in the Emirates in recent games. Constructive criticism is the right of all but these ultra negative fans have almost certainly cost us points and even worse, are doing the dirty work for those who hate this club and want us to fail – this should not be forgotten when they jump on the bandwagon when success comes.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Gooner80

    QUALITY POST!

    Lest we forget he has turned water our into wine

    Only to be sipped by s Alex Ferguson , & shared out amongst the pgmob at the end of the season!

  • avatar Gooner80

    @ Mr Wenger

    LMAO

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Mr Venger, the question you have asked is quite which will be answered differently by differenty countries. It depends which style is more dominant in the country. English criticize the spanish teams (or in this case Arsenal) as being too fragile and lacking the passion or ‘English spirit’ or physicality to play Football. While other countries will criticize England of not having quality n pure footballin teams who can make sublime passes. Both styles have their pros and cons. You can live without neither of it. Unless ofcourse you’re having Xavi, Iniesta and Messi in the same team!! :P

  • avatar DC

    @ Shard,
    I agree that Guardiola may not be much better tactically than Arsene, he doesn’t really need to be with the current Barca side, but what he does have is the ability to continue and optimise Arsene’s Barcelona-esque model as he’s been brought up, schooled and indoctrinated in its principles. He’s the only manager that i currently believe can oversee our style of play once our ageing Arsene’s had some success and had enough of the touchlines – and I expect that to be within the next 2-3 years.
    All that said though, where Pep may be better than Arsene, is with his defensive acumen! The high pressing, hard-working, coordinated, smothering defense of Barca is, for me, their most impressive attribute! That’s why they’re also one of the best defensive sides in the world! It makes it so hard to play any football against them and when you’re attacking, it always leaves you concerned about losing the ball whilst out of position thus making your attacks impotent! I’m sure that Guardiola would demand that from ALL of our “athletic” players who would benefit massively from that which is clearly devoid at the moment!

  • avatar DC

    @ Shard,
    Guardiola won’t go to ManU as the way they play doesn’t suit his style! Besides he wants to be down south!

  • avatar Mr Venger

    In seriousness tho, I cannot bear to listen to anymore football phone ins , podcasts, motd or even the commentary of the games ANY LONGER. It makes me cry blood from eyes and ears at the way they talk of our club & put the knife into Wenger. This army of Media c***s should be ashamed of themselves. They should be thankfull to Wenger & Arsenal for making the race even mildly interesting this season, in the face of Chelski, Citeh MILLIONS and of course the mighty Tiny Totts who have had an amazing season apparently?? Let alone the decisions which I’m sick of. I’d rather not have to mention that but it is relevent. Id rather just be beaten without the decisions & controversy but maybe thats asking too fucking much of this biased pro man utd circus that is the bent premier league. I hope your reading Scudamore, and you too Richards. And Riley . I hope your proud of your selves!!

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Pep – in our dreams. Wenger has said it himself – Dragan Stojkovic will be the annointed one. Great player, brain the size of a planet – same philosophies on football as Wenger. Trouble is, no EPL experience – he will infuriate the Wenger out mob.
    If Pat Rice retires, expect him to come over from Japan for next season. And please God, with a defence coach as well.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Richards, Riley and Scudamore will be very proud of themselves unfortunately. Utd form the fabric of their very existance. They cannot go more than a year without a title of their Sky will fall in.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    You see , thats exactly what i mean DP.
    You see it as as us against spain. British Bulldogs against the weak but skillfull spanish. Well the Spanish style actually originally comes from the Dutch blueprint, who also know a thing or 2 about football. And most teams in the world seem to play a style more remimiscent of this ‘Spanish style’, or at least attempt to. And then theres the british isles who have their ‘own way, or interpretation you could say, on the way to play, and the rules. but the rest of the world pretty much follows the other way, including all the fa’s coaches and referees. DOES That not say something??

  • avatar Shard

    @DC

    But he is keen to only extend his contract year on year. Unless he expects Wenger to get the sack, it can only be that he’s expecting Ferguson to retire. I think Guardiola for all his representation of wanting to play beautiful football etc, will ultimately go where he feels he’ll get massive transfer funds. I don’t think that will be Arsenal.

    I also am not sure the Barca way of pressing would help us in England. Barca can’t keep it up for more than 70 mins, and Barca don’t spend half the game getting kicked about.Pressing needs the entire team to work as a unit. If one player is ‘muscled out’ then it can leave a way through for the opponent, and actually cause more harm.

  • avatar mikeyb

    Last season Arsenal conceded 41 goals in 38 Premier League matches, and Arsene Wenger identified this as a key reason in his team’s failure to win the title. After 34 matches so far this time around, 36 is the figure in the goals against column. At the AGM last October I asked the manager how he intended to address this very problem of allowing the opposition to score too many goals. His response was that “We are working very hard”. Hmmm, maybe so, maybe not. But if they are working very hard, then it might suggest that the methods may need improvement. The concept of a specialist defensive coach might be anathema to the manager, but – assuming he is neither about to be sacked or resign – it’s one of the changes that the board need to insist upon this summer. Arsenal have a reputation for being poor at defending set pieces, and once again, it proved the case at the Reebok.

    Wenger: Defending – who needs it?
    Still, surely, with the manager’s words about not believing he needs to strengthen his squad significantly, at least now the board will seriously have to reconsider the proposed price increases for home matches. The 2.5% rise in VAT has been levied to tickets for silver and red members since the New Year, so will inevitably be added to the price that season ticket holders pay. However, the extra 4% already being asked for club level renewals is taking the p*ss if there is no intention to spend all available money in the player trading account on improving the squad by buying better.

    Arsenal lost this match, and finally relinquished what should have been an easy title to win, due to a mix of poor defending at set pieces and their own profligacy in front of goal. They created enough very decent opportunities to have won the game relatively comfortably, but in the end, their failure to net more than once cost them dear. Mind you, I was phlegmatic before the game, the title chucked away for this observer in the trio of draws with Sunderland, West Brom and Blackburn. And when Bolton scored their winner, I simply thought, what’s the difference between a defeat and a draw in the greater scheme of things? And then it came to me. A defeat would be preferable because the manager cannot cling to the statistic of the unbeaten league run as evidence of the quality of his side in post match interviews and press conferences.

    So it’s over. Some of my regular correspondents have said they couldn’t wait for the season to end for a while now. They could see the psychological weakness in the team (as opposed to its mental strength) would mean that they would win nothing, even when there were still three trophies still to play for. And there were some – in the comments section to previous editorials – who berated me for suggesting similar. In the aftermath of the Newcastle 4-4, I wrote, “the conclusion of today… is that Arsenal are not resilient enough, and do not have the strength in depth to win the title.” However, as I have not worked half a day in football, Arsene Wenger will tell you my opinion is worth toffee.

    However, I will end by responding to ‘Bee Jee Wee Jee’, who, commenting on my thoughts on the 1-1 draw with League One Leyton Orient back in February, wrote, “Why throw stones right now? It’s really unbecoming. We just did Barca. We are on our way to Wembley to collect our first trophy. We will win this tie against the O’s at home. Finally, the title is in reach. Why don’t you sit down and write an ‘Online Ed’ thanking Wenger. That would be a good use of your time.”

    So Bee Jee, this is for you. Thanks Arsene, it’s been a hell of a ride. However, can you stop taking me on your journey to the promised land with a young squad that develops together. I want to get off.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Someone open the door now!

  • avatar Gooner80

    @ Mr Wenger

    I cant listen to the phone ins or hear the same tired arguments, Arsenal are not perfect by no means and there is evident problems.

    these Pundits are like Woody out of TOY story you pull their string “arsenal havent won a trophy in so many years” pull it again “Arsenal need a english centre back” Pull it again “spurs are a breath of fresh air”

    Arsene is a connoisseur of football and the water he has turned to wine is like the finest champagne the palettes of the english masses are just winos on a park bench swigging back super tennets,his champagne is wasted on their unrefined palettes, Arsene Aka the messiah has brought a brand of football to england that has never been seen before and “spurs are a breath of fresh air” how many tournaments do england have to be knocked out of before they will learn

  • avatar mikeyb

    There are only three things wrong with Arsenal…

    …the board, the manager and the players

    The Board
    The Board are more concerned with the results on the balance sheet rather than the pitch – no surprises there, after all, they have investments to protect. The move to the E******s has coincided with a collective complacency that finishing 2nd – 4th with a decent cup run is acceptable, as long as the cherished Champions League place is preserved. This way of thinking might have been understandable when only the so-called Big 4 could even think about qualifying. However, the emergence of Man City and Tottenham has moved the goalposts so that there is now genuine competition for a place in the top four.

    Insulting and graceless
    When the plans for a new stadium were announced, we were told that the increased revenue streams would provide the manager with the necessary resources to compete in the transfer market. The lack of expenditure has since been attributed by some to the manager not being given the funds to buy the players he wants as loans on the new stadium were repaid. Does anyone believe this? Does anyone really believe that a club that generates over £3m ticket income from one match alone cannot afford larger transfer fees? Think about that one the next time you are asked to pay over £100 for a league match. The fact of the matter is that the manager chooses not to spend big because he cannot trust his judgement (more on that below). The money is there, in huge bundles, but the manager will not use it. The policy of nurturing young talent instead of huge transfer splashes would be laudable given that UEFA’s fair play rules are on the horizon. But we were not told this when we were asked to pay top dollar for a cushioned seat at the new home.

    Notwithstanding the moving and shaking that has been going on in recent years by various parties, there has been a complete absence of a dominant figure since David Dein left. Whatever the rights and wrongs of Dein’s activities leading to his departure, the fact is that he was the only person at Board level who could influence the manager, which meant the creation of a power vacuum as soon as he was shown the door. Nobody else on the Board has since been able to pull the manager aside and tell him to pull his socks up or that things on the pitch are not good enough. He might not have been everybody’s cup of tea, but Dein’s role in working alongside the manager should not be under-estimated. Instead we are left with a manager who is untouchable and completely unaccountable for failings on the pitch.

    The Manager
    I have yet to refer to him by name as I have got to the point that mere mention of it sends me into an unhealthy mixture of anger and frustation… just like him. But I am allowed to feel this way because I am simply a fan who is suffering. The manager is the single most important representative of the club and yet his increasingly embarrassing antics on the touchline, his negligence in dealing with obvious failings on the pitch and his insulting and graceless attitude displayed in post-match interviews are a disgrace… and he is allowed to get away with it. Some might say that his frustration shows that he cares. But he does not seem to care about the reputation of the club. Yes he has achieved the transformation of the club’s reputation from the “boring 1-0/arms in the air for offside” days to the swashbuckling and cosmopolitan reputation of today. However, his constant rantings at referees, his repeated attribution of bad play to bad luck and his demented mantras about “team spirit”, “togetherness” and “leadership” reveal a manager who has lost the plot.

    His inability to acknowledge in post match interviews that the other team might have played better than his own is galling enough, but his positive characterisation of his team’s performances regardless is just insulting to the fans. We know what we have seen. What we need to hear from the manager is that he recognises the faults that we have witnessed and is addressing them. Just repeating the same mantra deludes nobody but himself. Is it asking too much for the manager to come out after a game and say that the other team was better or that the referee got a decision right? This should be a serious issue for the Board to address, but of course they are powerless to act (see above). Do we really want to be represented by ignorance and arrogance?

    As for the failings on the pitch, where to start? The lack of meaningful tactics that can overcome the proverbial parked bus in front of the goal. The lack of heart to want to win. The lack of courage to deal with adversity. The lack of character to overcome the odds. The lack of leadership not just from the captain but throughout the team. These are all failings that have not just appeared in the last few games but have been evident since the move to the E******s… yes, five years. The manager’s inability to address these failings can only be described as negligent and arrogant. His transfer dealings have been, at best haphazard. Without going through all the ins and outs, his decision to shop at Asda instead of Waitrose has left the squad full of the average and the mediocre.

    The Players
    Where should we start? The goalkeeper(s) who cannot keep goal, the centre halves who cannot head the ball or talk to each other, the left back who cannot cross a ball, the reserve right back who is just poor, the midfield who cannot defend, the midfield player who cannot tackle, the reserve centre forward being asked to play on the wing, the centre forward with glass ankles who cannot play more than 20 games a season, the captain whose heart is elsewhere. I won’t mention all the poor quality players we have had to put up with as there are far too many to go through. Collectively, they have no trophies and therefore (for Arsenal) they are not good enough. I feel sorry for some of them who have been asked to perform to a level they are not capable of. Some are in the comfort zone and do not appear to hurt when they fail.

    It has been said recently that it’s a pity that Arsenal “have thrown the league away” in a year when Chelsea have gone backwards, Man City have not quite got there and Man Utd have their worst team in living memory. The truth is that Arsenal have not thrown anything away as they simply have not been good enough. The fact that Arsenal are still second (at time of writing) with six games to go only demonstrates the paucity of the Premier League as evidenced by performances in Europe.

    The takeover by Stan Kroenke has delivered the message that nothing will change – this is supposed to be the good news. The only message the Board will understand is from the wallet. Not renewing season tickets, not renewing memberships and boycotting merchandise are the only things that fans who want change can do. Otherwise it’s more of the same. Anyone got something better to do with their £900?

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Maybe you can share a taxi with Nb!

  • avatar mikeyb

    Today has confirmed what we all really knew in the 1st place. That this team doesn’t have what it takes to win trophies. If you match everyone of our players against the United players and chose the better of the 2 in terms of technical ability, skill and flare, most of, if not all of the arsenal players would come out on top. But football isn’t about silky skills….its about organization, team work, tactics and having a pair of…… Lets get this season over with, let all these over paid waste of space losers go on their fancy holidays, then lets get back to work and pray Wenger makes some purchases, we only need a couple. And if he doesn’t then thats it, we really should call for him to get fired. In my opinion his future rests on his actions this summer. I can’t believe I’m actually looking forward to the season finishing and a summer with no football. Guess I’m just sick of Wengers miserable sulky face and listening to his deluded belief in his “young team”

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    MikeyB , thanks for the cut and paste from Online Gooner, strange how Kevin W’s opinions seem to have changed a bit since he wrote his rather excellent book – still c’est la vie

  • avatar Shard

    Can someone explain to me what about Wenger’s ‘antics’ on the touchline is so embarrassing or damaging to the club’s reputation that some people can’t stop talking about it? No really. Why is that even an issue. How is it embarrassing?

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Why not start your own blog mikeyb?? Your comments are way to long to bother to read all the way through, and are too far removed from the original article

  • avatar Gooner80

    @ Mikey B

    I find myself in a religious mood today and it sounds like you have been tempted by the devil

    ******SO i WILL SHARE A STORY WITH YOU AND EVERYONE*********
    THIS MIGHT MAKE YOU THINK WHEN YOU CALL FOR THE HEAD OF OUR MANAGER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    While staggering down the side of the road one afternoon near Grape Hall, a well known Member of Parliament is tragically hit by a garbage truck and dies.
    After a short stop in Bridgetown to pick up a cheap bottle of E.S.A.F. rum, his soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.
    ‘Welcome to heaven,’ says St. Peter. ‘Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a BLP or DLP politician around these parts, you see, so we’re not sure what to do with you.’
    ‘No problem, just let me in,’ says the former Member of Parliament.
    ‘Well, I’d like to,’ says St. Peter, ‘but I have orders from higher up. What we’ll do is have you spend one day in hell and one in heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity.’
    ‘Really, I’ve made up my mind. I want to be in heaven,’ says the MP.
    ‘I’m sorry, but we have our rules.’
    Visiting Hell
    And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of an exact copy of the Green Monkey golf course at Sandy Lane! In the distance is the clubhouse and standing in front of it are all his dead friends and other politicians who had worked with him.
    Everyone is very happy and nicely dressed. They run to greet him, shake his hand, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at the expense of the people and running consulting fees through Switzerland and Miami.
    They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster, caviar and champagne just like the old days! They laugh about promising Integrity Legislation and Freedom of Information and how the voters believed them every time!
    ‘Integrity Legislation? That’s a good one!’ laughs the devil as he slaps his knee and pours the drinks. The devil, who really is a very friendly and nice guy, has a good time with the crowd dancing and telling jokes. They are having such a good time that before the Member of Parliament realizes it, it is time to go.
    Everyone gives him a hearty farewell and waves while the elevator rises….
    The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens in heaven where St. Peter is waiting for him.
    ‘Now it’s time to visit heaven.’ says St. Peter.
    So, 24 hours pass with the MP joining a group of contented souls moving from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time and, before he realizes it, the 24 hours have gone by and St. Peter returns.
    ‘Well, then, you’ve spent a day in hell and another in heaven. Now choose your eternity.’
    The MP reflects for a minute, then he answers: ‘Well, I would never have said it before, I mean heaven has been delightful, but I think I would be better off in hell.’
    So St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell.
    Now the doors of the elevator open and he’s in the middle of a barren land covered with waste and garbage. It’s Mount Stinkaroo and it’s still burning!!!
    He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting it in black bags as more trash falls from above. The air is putrid with the smell of decay. There is a single standpipe marked “Courtesy of your Barbados Water Authority”, but when he opens the tap only a single rusted drop lands in the dirt.
    The devil comes over to him and puts his arm around his shoulder.
    ‘I don’t understand,’ stammers the MP. ‘Yesterday I was here and there was the Sandy Lane golf course and clubhouse, and we ate lobster and caviar, drank champagne, and danced and had a great time. Now there’s just Mount Stinkaroo and my friends look miserable.
    What happened?’
    The devil looks at him, smiles and says, ‘Yesterday we were campaigning…..
    Today you voted.’

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Wengers ‘antics’.
    Makes it sound asif he’s on the touchline juggling on a unicycle and wearing a clowns outfit or something. Sometimes I wish he would just to shut the bastards up. And wear one of those electric shock buzzers on his palm for the handshake at the end. Give the fuckers what they deserve!

  • avatar DC

    @ Mandy Dodd,
    Whoever’s manager next won’t entirely and solely be down to Arsene, particularly if massive success (i.e. Champions league or EPL) doesn’t come with him before he leaves the sidelines. The pressure of an unknown, non-EPL or European experienced manager taking the helm of our now financially stable club will be very difficult!
    @ Shard,
    You might be right about the hardened EPL but I do recall that we did pretty well at home against Chelsea with the pressing game?! Unfortunately it hasn’t been employed properly since – whether that’s been through choice or lack of effort, I’m not sure?!
    Wrt ManU, many names have been bandied around including the “chosen one” Jose! However, SAF has already gone on record regarding his admiration for David Moyes who I too rate very highly! But unlike Arsene, I think that Moyes has more chance of going to ManU than Stojkovic has of coming to Arsenal!

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Classic Gooner80, both the last 2 posts!

  • avatar Shard

    @Mr Venger

    LOL..

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Touchline antics are just a pathetic excuse to get at Wenger, just as people criticise the coat he wears.
    All goes back to the media campaign against him and we know ehere that started.
    Wonder how they will judge Arry should he be found guilty and get locked up? Guess he will still be a breath of fresh air…

  • avatar Shard

    @DC

    I guess. It doesn’t matter really right now though. Arsene’s going nowhere. It is up to him to fix the problems are team is facing, and take them to the next level. I don’t think any amount of abuse will make him turn away from that challenge. A lot can happen in 3 years. For now. All that interests me is seeing how the team responds against ManU. Wenger still protected them today. They have to be aware that they owe him, and us fans too, a few good performances now.

  • avatar Gooner80

    CANT GET THE PICTURE OF WENGER ON A unicycle OUT OF MY HEAD, IF HE DID NOTHING THEY WOULD SAY HE LACKED PASSION

  • avatar DC

    @ Gooner80,
    LOL! Hilarious and so true!!!

  • avatar WalterBroeckx

    Oh damned you are all using the lines from an article I just finished… except about the unicycle…

  • avatar WalterBroeckx

    Gooner80, great comments!!

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    DC- Really Hope you are right on Stojkovic, I was a bit worried when I heard Wenger say that….to say the least…
    How about Wenger overseeing Jens for the keepers, DB helping out the attacking players and any of PV/TA/MK or SB as more defensive coaches….dreamworld I guess………….
    Wengers critics say he will not tolerate big voices around him, no idea if this is true, maybe the summer needs to be time to prove a few wrong

  • avatar Shard

    Exactly goooner80 and Mandy Dodd.. But how do they even seek to justify that criticism? By anyone’s standards, Wenger behaves remarkably well on the whole. Sure he blows his top at times. He moans if you like, he blames referees or the opposition. But i don’t think I’ve known him to ever personally attack anybody.(Except Martin Taylor, and that bastard deserved it. Even then Wenger later apologised) He doesn’t come out and snitch about others. Among managers, I think he’s actually very very well behaved. It just amazes me what crap passes off as fact, or in this case, even as opinion.

  • avatar Gooner80

    @shard

    Alan Pardew nearly got knocked by his unicycle, he honked his nose very loudly in the west ham game

  • avatar DC

    @ Shard,
    Absolutely! How they end the season, particularly against the “champions elect”, will further reveal to Arsene and us a great deal! Who deserves Arsene’s GENUINE support will be clarified at the end of the Fulham match!

  • avatar Shard

    @Mandy

    I’m not sure that’s true about Wenger not wanting other opinions. I think the first thing he sees is whether the other person’s overall vision on football and how it should be played matches his own. Which in my view is fair enough. You can’t have completely opposite mindsets working together.

    I’m not too fussed about the stojkovic comment. He just gave an opinion. It’s a very far cry from that to him actually becoming Arsenal manager.

    There does seem to be a case that Pat Rice will retire this summer. I guess at the least there is space for Steve Bould to come up as assistant. I’d love to see Keown and Bergkamp coach our defence and strikers respectively.. Too much to hope for I suppose

  • avatar Shard

    @gooner80

    You are on fire today :) Keep it up.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    They will not stop attacking Wenger – he represents a team trying to step outside the English way, the closer rebels and radicals get to changing things, the harder those locked into the status quo will fight it. History is full of such examples, life was not made easy at times for Darwin, Mandela or even Churchill at times (ok I know Wenger is only a football manager!) For some reason, Utd, Chelsea, Spurs and even Citeh are part of their comfortable status quo, Wengers Arsenal are not.
    This team are at the hardest part of the summit. Just a bit more effort and they can get over the top

  • avatar WalterBroeckx

    Well maybe with the crisis at Ajax (in the board room) it could be that Bergkamp leaves.

    By the way Ryo Miyachi played the full 90 minutes in Feyenoord-PSV. In the first half he was very influential and made the right back look poor at times. PSV is fighting for the title and had beaten Feyenoord 10-0 (Ten to nil that is) in the autumn last year. Now with Ryo in the team (not just him as a chance) they beat PSV 3-1 and going from a place in the play down when Ryo came to and now Feyenoord and Ryo are fighting for a place in Europe.
    And Ryo has played a big part in the Feyenoord revival.

    Okay, thats enough about Dennis, Ryo and HOlland

  • avatar Gooner80

    @Walter Dennis was so underrated as a player, that man was gifted would love to see him at arsenal

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Only trouble re Dennis as coach is the flying issue in the european games.

  • avatar DC

    @ Mandy Dodd,
    So true! Which is why Arsene must succeed for the sake of all BRITISH football!
    Expensive deadwood on and off the pitch removed in the post-season, a little coaching support from some experienced arsenal winners, and he’ll finally be able to shove it where the sun don’t shine to the deluded footballing establishment!

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Mr Venger, if Dennis joined our coaching squad, I would personally hire a Bentley and drive him to games in Europe.
    Just looking at Wenger after the game – he is hurt, and badly.
    Surely, for the sake of his health, he needs to make the changes to ensure we do not have this sort of end of season again. I have a fear that is could all be too much and he could walk, a small chance – maybe 5% but a fear nonetheless. It also appears he is trying to keep Pat Rice on board – from what I have heard this really will not happen.
    This summer is a real chance to put a few things right. I think we need more changes on the coaching front as much as on the playing front, there seems to be a staleness and lack of belief, even with players as talented as this lot.
    I fear we will lose Cesc, if we do, strengthen and FFS get Wenger some help. Hopefully Kroenke has the dynamism to erm… gently push a bit of help Wengers way – we want a successful team and manager, not another Houllierwaiting to happen.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    DC – It can happen if Wenger lets it. Some of these faces would do anything to help this club, many have said as much. Even Henry has said he would love to return in some capacity.
    What a cause that could be for them, what motivation they would have and could you imagine how the players would respond to some of them. Maybe Cesc could be persuaded to stay?
    Maybe I am just trying to cheer myself up here.
    The club need to stop pussy footing around next season, get fans onside, beat the refs, shut critics up and WIN something. Ex players who love this club can help -Wenger / Kroenke you know it make sense.

  • avatar Shard

    @Mandy Dodd

    Personally, I’m not worried about Cesc. If he looks to go, it will be for the wrong reasons as far as I’m concerned. No player is bigger than the club. Cesc is fantastic obviously, but he hasn’t done enough to justifiably say that the club is failing him (I’m not saying he said that). I believe he will stay, and I believe he loves Arsenal and wants to win with us. If he goes, we will find replacements to fill that void.

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Hope he does stay Shard – because we are a lesser team without a fully fit Cesc. But if he does stay, I fear it will only be because Bacra do not yet need him or waiting until his price drops. I certainly think he loves Arsenal – and I am sure he has been desperate to win something for us but not sure he can easily be replaced or not on our budget.
    But it must be frustrating for a player like that to play in a team that has had Almunia in goal for 3 years,who had Slyvestre in defence, and who make the defensive cock ups we do. (I am not saying Cesc is completely blameless for problems this season, as he admitted ref Nou Camp). He is an elite player, if we can keep him, lets make sure in the future, either through better coaching or aquisition or both, he is surrounded by a few approaching his level of ability and desire.

  • avatar Gooner80

    @Mandy Dodd
    I dont think cesc has a choice wenger wants him and he is only going to leave when his contract runs out or down. I think B52 will leave not sure about clichy.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Obviously the right additions if available will strengthen any team, and we do lack a bit of attacking threat now that rosicky never seems to have been the player he should, and bendtner / chamakh hardly play. But as far as the defense goes, we just need the experience and to work out a better strategy on set pieces.
    Would be great to see some more energy from wide midfield areas as an alternative to what weve got. Maybe lansbury and Myachi could do this?
    In c midfield, depends whether Diaby will ever be able to get over his injuries imo. Other wise not too much wrong and Frimpong if he recovers will be a good addittion , offering some aggression which should please alot of fans

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Maybe Gooner80, just do not want him staying if he is unhappy over things. Lets keep him and keep him happy in an ideal world. Guess he could put in a transfer request but hope he would not do that.
    Agree on B52. Do you thing Arshavin will stay? Thought he did ok today.

  • avatar Tasos

    Mickeyb@

    I hope you stand by your word and get off.
    Puts Me one place closer to a season ticket.

    Thanks

  • avatar Gooner80

    I have to admit I was on Arshavin’s back a few months ago, but the guy is quality, he contributes alot.

    I remember quite a few cases like with Steven Gerrard not playing well for a while when they didnt get their move, Cesc in the game at blackpool and arguably at spurs was SENSATIONAL, he hasnt been as good as last year but that might have a lot to do with the world cup, a very much over looked reason why chelsea struggled this year.

    I think there is going to be a lot more competition for places next year and people losing their place might not get back in so easily

  • avatar Adam

    Glad i have not been in England for the last three games, my heart goes out to all the frustrated gooners. For me though i hope for two more massive efforts from the team, One against Utd, open the door for chelsea (i dislike UTD that much) and secondly and most important for me the Stoke game, Id like to see Ramsey break that numpties leg (why not, it is only a 3 game ban, no biggy) and for the rest of the team to take out there frustration on the remaining stoke tramps, For once i would like to see Arsene put out a side that just kicks the shit out of an opponent. Can you feel my Frustration?

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    We have to get back to winning – I am sure the authorities, media and refs would love to lose our top 4 place – lose the next 2 and we will be nervous

  • avatar steven

    If my memory serves me, back in the days before 15 April 1989, Arsenal (in keeping with many other clubs) used to open a set of gates at half time, for the benefit of those who felt the need to leave particularly early. This presented an ideal opportunity to “bunk in”, enabling the errant fan to catch at least the last half hour of a game, if they were prepared to weave their way through the North Bank masses. Of course, the terrible events of that season’s FA Cup semi final would ultimately change the demographic of football beyond recognition. This came to mind on Sunday when, had someone “bunked in” after 90 minutes, they could arguably have witnessed everything of note and saved themselves the frustration of all that preceded the lengthy spell of injury time. Until our short lived advantage was registered, there was little to suggest that the hosts were involved in a genuine title challenge. Consequently, there was little cause for incentive among the majority to be moved to song and to offer the support required… perhaps the very definition of circuitous failure.

    The sheer comedy value of Eboue conceding an improbable last gasp penalty, after having forged a winning position, neatly contrasted the lack of class on the pitch from that in evidence prior to the game. In truth, perhaps comparison between the two moments is crass. My intention is simply to illustrate that we are the very antithesis of Barcelona, to whom we are erroneously compared – ability on the pitch being polarised against behaviour off it. The recently released cover of UB40’s “Sing Our Own Song”, recorded by Arsenal in the Community is further evidence of the Club at its best and I believe that this is a very worthwhile cause, which I shall be supporting.

    Having recently written about David Rocastle, sadly I am once more eulogising about a man whose love of Arsenal Football Club was always evident. I have heard it said that the stresses of our move to the new stadium could have caused a significant underlying factor in Danny Fiszman’s illness. If that were the case, then in certain ways, I am reminded of Herbert Chapman’s passing – in the case of Chapman, there is no doubt that his love of the Club was ultimately inextricably linked with his death. History will recall two individuals who have left an indelible mark on the history of the Club; both possessing a passion and when required, single-mindedness of approach that often typifies those at the very top of their chosen profession. In different ways, both have given so much to provide for the future of the Club.

    Quite what “Silent Stan” has planned for the Club is uncertain. As ever, things are not simple; with Alisher Usmanov increasing his holding further and vowing not to sell to the American. Pride is at stake and it will rankle with Kroenke that he has an adversary within the camp, despite his efforts to exclude him. I wonder if there is any possibility of Usmanov selling to another interested party, despite his pronounced “love for the Club”. I feel certain that there is at least one party who would readily enter negotiations and who I believe has already expressed an interest.

    I have my doubts as to the actual success of the proposed Financial Fair Play rules which will be introduced next year. There has been a great deal of emphasis concerning the “Respect” campaign, yet there remains confusion as to whether an England international punching a peer during a game constitutes disrespect. If the new laws are applied with similar selectivity, then the money which is almost certainly being spent by certain clubs, on lawyers hired to identify loopholes within the rules, will be considered an investment. An lesson if you will, that all animals are equal, but that some are more equal than others.

    With both fans and former players – and lately current players, including the captain – openly questioning the direction which the Club is taking, change seems inevitable. How such change is effected and to what extent is more open to debate than its necessity. I have previously lamented the presence of a strong right hand man for Arsene Wenger; it now seems that Pat Rice may retire at the end of the season. If Ivan Gazidis is serious about driving the Club forward, then this appointment would be carefully considered. Otherwise, forcing the manager’s hand on embarking upon end of season tours will be nothing more than a hollow gesture.

    In terms of first team personnel, there will surely be some coming and going. The requirement for sustainability and also recent history dictates that there will not be wholesale changes. I have mentioned names before; but now is not the time to dwell on individuals. Suffice to say that if the work undertaken by Danny Fiszman is to be realised to best advantage, then the Club has to dispense with its current myopia. Arsene Wenger was at a loss to explain the flat “performance” against Blackburn – he will know that the very fans who he and Peter Hill Wood have recently eschewed are not without justification in their increasingly vocalised concerns.

    In light of all that has occurred in the last week or so, as the season draws towards its conclusion, there are two thoughts that continue to gnaw away. Most immediately, if we do not win the title, then the accepted minimum aim of fourth place should not be taken for granted. Writing this prior to our journey to the dark side of North London, I have spoken to several friends who have expressed concerns about ensuring Champions League football next term. Time will tell, but the implications of any such failure are self explanatory.

    Secondly and with reference to the first consideration, it appears that this summer will be the most important in the Club’s tenure under Arsene Wenger. Unless Arsenal confound the bookies and win the title, then there can be no doubt that going forward, the Club’s hierarchy will be judged on the future and not be allowed to rest on their laurels. If the Club can translate its efforts off the pitch with a similar approach to the large green area which every (increasingly costly) seat in the stadium faces, then there is cause for optimism.

    There is now no scope for pleading ignorance. Responding to comments made by the likes of Paul Merson, by even considering a ban from the ground and training complex is blinkered at best and arrogant at worst. Opinion is strongly divided among fans, with differences conceived not over the course of this season but over several campaigns. There is no merit in complaining if FIFA and UEFA fail to implement their own latest edict. Rather, the Club must assume that other chairmen will invest and should not be reticent to respond within its means. After all, there was little hesitation in a steep increase in ticket pricing structure for next season’s fixtures.

    Whilst no club has any divine right to success, we will continue to back those who wear the red and white until the season ends. They, in turn, must offer some encouragement for such resolute endeavour from the fans. With sincere condolences to Danny Fiszman’s family and friends, I am quite sure that it is the least that he would have wanted for his Club

  • avatar walter

    Mandy Dodd, after reviewing the game and with things in mind in the last 3 games…. I’m sure they are doing all they can to make us lose our top 4 place. All they can and more…

  • avatar Mr Venger

    That linesman was the same one who gave the clichy pen @ Old trafford. Somehow didn’t see walcott clearly tripped in the box this time although it was right in front of him

  • avatar goonergerry

    Obviously no top football manager is at his best following a defeat away to a supposedly inferior team at a critical part of the season.
    However,Arsene Wenger looks awful and sounds like a broken man. He does not look to be in any fit state to put right what is not working with the team. Are we witnessing the end of an era?

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Not sure I agree. Looks quite composed in this interview

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_prem/9462367.stm

  • avatar Shard

    @goonergerry

    How someone looks and trying to analyse how they are feeling, what they are thinking is pretty useless. Especially when it’s someone you know is under pressure. Not just from the media or the fans, but from himself. The man wants to win. So obviously he’ll show some strain. But how does one come to the judgment about whether he is a ‘broken man’? That is nonsense. It is just the last step. We’re so very close. But people would rather focus on the failings and talk about eras ending rather than concentrating on what needs to be done. I’m sure Wenger is thinking what he can do rather than worry endlessly.. comments like that are just projecting YOUR feelings as his.

  • avatar Brickfields Gunners

    Thanks Mr Venger for that thread -he doesn’t sound at all like a broken man -dissapointed, yes ;pissed off, yes; broken no.His players were found wanting again but the man remains to me a true gentleman. Not everyone may agree with his methods,but I believe he will get it right.
    “If a man does not keep pace with his companions ,perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.Let him step to the music which he hears ,however measured or far away”. Henry David Thoreau(1817-1862).

  • avatar Mandy Dodd

    Looking at headlines today, would think Wenger is beyond broken. The tabs and pundits scent blood. They are desperate for Spurs to peg us back and take us out of the CL, that would be their story, their desired outcome and they would hope the end of Wenger.
    Any so called Arsenal fans aiding and abetting this agenda on ruining someone who has done so much for the club, take them on (in a non violent way of course)as some in the Emirates have already done so.
    These pundits are mainly ex Liverpool / Spurs and Utd – our ex players seem to get sucked into beating to their drums to play to the gallery. Stand up Paul Merson and to a lesser extent , others. Ex Spurs and Pool players have an agenda, as unfortunately do the refs. The journalists writing this crap have never given Wenger a chance, just spend their time sucking up to Arry or a manager who refuses to talk to most of them.
    At the moment, it is Wenger against the world, and he knows it – he deserves the backing of true Arsenal fans in his hour of need. We need a seige mentality in remaining games, be under no illusions, so many want us to fail.
    Leave recriminations and gripes until the summer, unless you want to help Spurs out and want Owen Coyle / Martin O Neill / Moyes / Hodgson as our manager, as some idiots on some sites are now suggesting.

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Its pretty much what most of us had expected. The issues need to be solved. And whats with Arsenal always failing during the november and feb/march period?? Do our players have some kind of problem during these 2 periods?? Also lots of think over set piece defending and our own set piece attacks. Plus crosses have to be better. I had read in another arsenal blog that arsenal had made around 12 crosses in Spurs match and none of them were successful.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    Djouro had a bad game yesterday, but has been so good this season its important for us he recovers asap. looked nervous and shaky and on the late goal he had no aggression when going for the header.
    But much worse than that was Nasri on the post, had his hands on his hips as the ball goes in, could/should have headed it off the line had he been doing his job properly and that just isn’t good enough from him

  • avatar Dark Prince

    Mr Venger, i disagree with your criticism of Nasri’s defending on the post. Did u see that goal in real time? It was a header with lots of power and speed. No way Nasri could have reacted so fast. It should have been defended well. If you look at our first goal conceded, it was the same case. You cant let opponents hav a header at the 6 yard box like that. Nasri was quick to react that time, but still not quick enough to save the rebound.

  • avatar Mr Venger

    He had his hands on his hips, Ive seen many clearances over the years from the same situation just because the man on the post instinctively jumps to cover as much of the goal as possible because he’s alert and will do anything to stop a goal going in. Cashley was excellent at that. Some times they help it on into the goal, sometimes they get lucky, but my point is that with what was at stake in a match like yesterday, and at especially at that point of the match, standing casually with your hands on your hips is just not good. whether or not djouro was late to the header, he has to expect that the attacker may get to the ball first as part of his job at the post. This is one of the main things that we need to be more determined about to make the difference to our defense

  • avatar Mr Venger

    The man on the post need to defend the goal like his life depends on it! I’m not sure we always have that outlook in certain situations. Thats what is frustrating because its a basic necessity