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“Throw in a minute, you’ll get a throw in a minute” as we predict right again

So, to start with the important bit – the bit that kept me out all night with Billy the Dog celebrating our massive winnings – 2-0 to the Arsenal was the score predicted and 2-0 was what we got.

Several bookies ushered us out of their shops and we are having to place bets as far north as Tottenham High Road (although it is a rather distasteful part of the countryside, and I do with the civil authorities would either clean it up or call in the military) but we got the bets on and made our fortune.

A billion thanks to Phil Gregory for that prediction, and profound apologies too for not putting Phil’s name at the top – entirely my error.

And thus on to the game itself.

Watching from the upper tier behind the goal at the north end is a perfect way to understand the Stoke – Delap long throw.

The throw is long and powerful – but comes in two formats – one is the more conventional crescent shape – a gentle arc that goes a long way.  The other comes out almost straight with extraordinary power.

So everyone’s attention (including the lino and ref) is on this unique approach – and not on what happens off the ball.

The plan is simple: one or two players (not the same one each time) stand in front of the keeper (Almunia on this occasion) and back into him at the exact moment the ball is thrown at speed.  The lino misses it because he is looking along the line to see if the feet of the thrower are in the right place.  The ref misses the hanky-panky because he is watching where the ball gets to.

The throw in comes in, and other Stoke players charge forward.  The keeper is impeded and there is a chance of the ball going in the net because of the melee.    Thus it is not the long throw itself that causes the issues (although dealing with a ball travelling in a straight line about seven feet off the ground is troublesome,) but the hidden activity in front of the keeper.

The ref knows as we all know from the game against the KGB, impeding the goal keeper is an offence which should stop play.  But he doesn’t see it.

It was alarming that it took some time before Almunia got his defence organised in a way to resist this ploy – putting an Arsenal player between himself and the Stoke players.  It leads to some pushing and shoving and this of course is dangerous in the penalty area.  Who knows which way the ref is going to award the foul?

But the real trick is for the goalkeeper to stand far forward of where he really wants to be, with the Arsenal player in front of him.   The keeper then backs off to his actual chosen position while our defender blocks the move by the Stoke players.  As a result a lot of the impact is lost.

That was one thing I learned at the game.   But I was also puzzled.   The Stoke keeper Sorensen  came out at half time, in the rain.  He did a bit of a warm up and then just stood there, at the end he would be defending, nattering to someone.    So the Stoke subs were right down the other end of the pitch, and Sorensen and pal were just standing there.

Does he do this every game?   I remember once the Everton keeper walking out half way through half time and sitting down in his goal, leaning up against the post – I think that was a protest against the manager.   He was the famous Everton keeper who is now quite fat – can’t remember his name.

Anyway, back to events.  Terrace highlight was some new chanting most of which I am not going to repeat here, but “Throw in a minute, You’ll get a throw in a minute, Throw in a minute, You’ll get a throw in a minute” did bring a smile to the lips.  (As you will have realised I am a sour faced old bugger and it takes a lot to make me smile).

We won something like 10-3 in terms of shots on target (Eboue saved one in the first half), and it was a nice game by and large.  Arshavin as a centre forward is fun – simply because just as most defences don’t know how to deal with a Stoke Delap throw in so I doubt that most will have a clue where Arshavin is, since they will be looking over his head.  (I say this on the basis that he and I share one attribute – we are both 5 feet 8).

But the injuries…

  • Diaby
  • Rosicky
  • Eduardo
  • Van Persie
  • Walcott
  • Djourou
  • Clichy
  • Gibbs
  • Traore
  • Bendtner

That’s a fair old team – no keeper out at the moment but I am sure we can injure one soon.

Still at least for this week’s game we can put out the reserves for a run around.   And in Ramsey we do have one hell of a player.   I haven’t checked this but I think he has played some part in virtually every game – what a hell of a bargain for £5m.  Maybe he’ll have to be centre forward since we don’t have any others left.

One final point of detail, before the advert.   Our chosen exit from the ground is over the north bridge, past the Arsenal underground station, and then double back to the station where the police barriers permit.   In case you don’t know what I am talking about, the point is that  the police put up temporary barriers so that you can approach the underground station from two sides in ordered queues, and to get to one of them you have to walk past the entrance and back.

Where the barrier gap is, is decided by the police.  Yesterday they decided to put the barrier gap exactly where the road had flooded through the heavy rain.   So to get into the queue you had to either take a flying leap (undiginified in a gent of my advanced years) or wade through the water.

Why can’t the Met employ intelligence officers to look out for things like that?

(Sorry dumb question)

That’s it.  500 games of Wenger (brilliant piece by him about the English fanatical love of the ceremony while totally forgetting the essence of the meaning behind it), 100 games at the Ems, and 100 years since our first game over Tottenham Hotspur.  All in one week.  Not bad eh?   (If you missed most of the 100 years of the Tiny Totts stuff then try www.blog.woolwicharsenal.co.uk)

Don’t forget MAKING THE ARSENAL.  Amazon are now delivering – although they are often showing “unavailable” on the store, but the publishers are fully up to date with despatch.  Details of this wonder book which makes a magnifico Xmas gift for the Arsenal supporter with it all, at www.emiratesstadium.info

23 comments to “Throw in a minute, you’ll get a throw in a minute” as we predict right again

  • Cape Gooner

    Tony, thanks for this analysis of the Delap throw. FIFA have decided against the use of behind the goal linesmen for the World Cup. Does anyone know how they justify this?

    The Portsmouth penalty awarded after the Hreidarsson dive surely proves the need for technology, or at least, extra linesman.

    Tony, how anyone can doubt that your piece about corruption in Football and in the media is 100% on the money, is way beyond me.

  • I think we defended very well yesterday – and it looks like the boys have been doing some serious work during the week at London Colney. It’s funny how this match was billed as the tallest and strongest mohynes in the premier league against the shortest and weakest flimsy team.

    God forbid anyone who thought that football was actually about skill and technique, notwithstanding the fact that our boys can ‘take care of themselves’ – but we’re stuck with the lazy journalism of ‘Arsenal must buy strength and presence’. Nick and Diaby are back shortly.

  • Flint McCullough

    Neville Southall- Tony.

    He was pissed off by Everton’s poor display & sat by the goalpost during half time.

    “The lino misses it because he is looking along the line to see if the feet of the thrower are in the right place”

    That’s what I was doing & I reckon his foot was over the line on probably a couple of occasions but there you go, it didn’t work for them.

    Strange performance from Stoke. They were very well set up & at 1-0 they could always snatch something but they seemed so concerned to keep their defensive shape that they never gave it a go.

    Given the last week, combined with losing yet another forward, I really feared this game but I thought we were excellent throughout & superb in patches.

    Nasri, Billy Boy & Eboue the pick for me, with Troare generally very impressive.

    The test is obviously at L’pool, who will obviously have Gerrard & Torres back specially for us. Let’s hope that Gallas isn’t out for that. Wins there & at Burnley or at least a min 4 points & we are still in with a shout.

  • The Law

    It never ceases to amaze me how so-called Arsenal fan sites can only whine and complain about everything. (Not you Tony, you’re amongst the greatest.) We win, they complain. We lose, they complain. Even after a game like yesterday’s where the whole team worked so hard and fought for the result, all they can do it nitpick and slag off some players (Eboue and Denilson).

    Anyway, back on topic: I too noticed how Stoke players always inserted themselves between Manny and the ball during throw-ins. I was surprised the ref only called them on it once. When is obstruction not obstruction? In any event, we showed we’ve got some fight left in us, and we got the result against an agricultural side. Bring on Insolvents FC!

  • Flint McCullough

    The Law

    It’s the nature of many a football fan, not just Arsenal, I’m afraid. The anti-support needs strong & constant knocking down, I feel. Frank at ACLF is a master at that.

    It is the same old argument that has been going on since Jack Charlton started it.

    I have always thought it was obstruction at the least, just like “shielding” the ball out of play.

    Jens tried to make a thing of it but was always ridiculed. Hardly ever given though so you have to get on with it. That being the case I don’t know why we don’t do it to the opposition ‘keeper more.

  • walter

    On the matter of the Delap throw inns I can be very clear.
    The rules are rather simple on this. If a player places himself before the keeper and by doing this prevents the keeper to run free in his 6 yard box it is a foul. So every time the players from Stoke committed a foul. When in the article from yesterday I wrote that Clattenburg wasn’t that good, that was what I meant. He only gave a foul once and should have given it almost every time.

    I also read on some blogs the negativity against some players like Denilson and I also wondered what on earth is going trough these peoples mind. They have been moaning for 2 weeks on how bad we are and how no good all the players are. Then we win against one of the most difficult and defensive teams in the EPL and still it is not good enough.
    We dominated from the first till the last minute, gave them no chances (only the unpredictable throws from Delap caused danger) and at times played some nice football and played the game out in a rather professional way. For me, for once the result was the only thing that mattered.

  • walter

    Didn’t you forget Gallas on the injury list Tony ?

  • walter

    And todays result means we are back in third place with a game in hand. Well I rather found it a good weekend for The Arsenal.
    Now lets play some kids in Greece this week and please…. no more injuries.

  • Adam Smith

    walter,

    aren’t we restricted as to who we can play in the CL in Greece, as a list has to be submitted before the competition starts, I doubt many youth players are included.

    Flint, you talk about Frank at ACLF, I read the blog but never comment, but he also has some rather outlandish comments which are not football related and quite bizarre.

  • walter

    Yes Adam, you’re right. They have to be on the list of 25(?) players to be able to play. I really don’t know who is on that list excactly…..

  • don't believe the hype

    There are always a lot of youth players on that list, so no problem playing them on Weds.

    Walter, anyone slating Denilson did not watch the match. He was excellent as was Nasri.

  • graham

    Jesus Christ what a game and what a comeback by Everton. Absolutely brilliant. Tottenham had total control of the game up to the 60 minute mark. Then Everton just sprung into life out of no where and came back beautifully. And I just had a feeling that Howard would save the penalty. Also, Seamus Coleman, what a player. Only 21 and he dominated the right side of the pitch today. He is going to be great for the Republic of Ireland someday. Thank you for the result Everton! We’ll pay you back

  • Jim

    Top chant for me was from the back of blocks 7&6

    So Rory got up and he threw it again
    Over and over and over again
    Bejeezus said Rory, I threw it so well
    I think I’ll get up and I’ll throw it again

    Genius! Just a shame it didn’t spread out.

  • don't believe the hype

    I like the sound of that Jim, shame it didn’t make it up to my block, although I seemed to be the only person around me who was even trying to join in with the singing. What a lazy uninterested bunch most of our fans are!

  • Phil K. M. M. Gunner!

    Walter
    the list is got to be a lil larger, I think 35. I remember seeing the likes of Watt, Merida, Wilshire, Gilbert in it. Am sure several of them will feature in Athens.
    By me yesterday’s was a good game. The drama was there as usual but once the little russian set the pace I always knew we would win. Eboue has quite an impact in our attacks and at times I really feel ashamed to have bood him last season. Denilson didn’t give us a chance to miss the suspended #17, Arshavin was outstanding, Almunia did ok, El Capitan was as good as always. You just feel that everybody gave their all and a little more. It’ll be ok if manage a point at Anfield but am sure they’ll go for all three.

  • eduardo

    walter
    December 6th, 2009 at 6:55 pm
    Yes Adam, you’re right. They have to be on the list of 25(?) players to be able to play. I really don’t know who is on that list excactly

    Not right, there is indeed a list of 25 but youth players can also be used who are not on that list of 25

    Tony did you get any reports of the very bad racist behaviour of many of the Stoke fans, not suprised with Stoke being a strong BNP area, but surely the non racist stoke fans need to help stamp this out, and of course both Stoke and Arsenal FC should highlight this, in a week where the media made a fuss over an object being thrown at Fat Frank its such a pity they can not highlight a bigger dreg on the game, that of racist fans

  • Phil K. M. M. Gunner!

    I’ve checked and it’s actually 45 players on the list. Sunu, Coqueline, Eastmond, Frimpong, Bartley, Cruise, Merida, Barazite, Mannone are all eligible to play in champions league.

  • walter

    Thanks for pointing this out Eduardo. I don’t know the rules to whom we could use exactly. In fact for the ref this is the least of his worry’s. If a teams trys to play a player that cannot play we just let them do this and it is up to the FA to take actions against that team.

  • Just on the point of Stoke fans behaviour – I sit upstairs almost opposite the away fans, this season, so I can see them, but only at a distance.

    There was certainly a commotion in the away section at one stage and a lot of stewards moving into the area, but I have no idea why that was.

    On the issue of the list of nominated players for the Champs League I think in fact there are two lists – the second being under 21s or something like that – and that list can be very long. But certainly, given that we have won that mini league, and given our injury crisis, we ought to be giving some of them a game. If we play Senderos and Silvestre in the centre of defence to give some stability, it is a chance for the League Cup team to have a run around and impress.

    And to feel part of the whole game. Put Ramsey in there as Cesc II and Coquelin as Song – I just don’t know who our fourth reserve left back is.

    JET can play anywhere…

    And by the way, even after three games scoring only 2 goals we are still top scorers in the league.

  • shotta-gunna

    Flint @ 3:42 pm – Thanks for bigging-up ACLF.
    “The anti-support needs strong & constant knocking down, I feel. Frank at ACLF is a master at that.”
    I am sure YW, the blogger, and the regular posters over there, especially Frank, appreciate your recognition. Like many ACLF regulars, I recently (6 or so months ago) learnt of Untold Arsenal by posters at ACLF who support both web-sites. For my part, I see ACLF as as a place where we get down and dirty with the doomers, trolls and some of the vilest so-called Arsenal fans. Frank is our best agitator (he may go over the top sometimes, but there is no questioning his loyalty to what is good for Arsenal FC). Untold Arsenal on the other hand is a lot more polite and reasoned, mainly because Tony has done a good job of keeping out the those who don’t support Lord Wenger. Needles to say, I post at both.
    Long may both sites continue their very good work.

  • mark

    What is your prediction against Liverpool Tony?

  • AnonymousGun

    For UCL.. we can play those that are under 21 without the need to register in the compulsory 25 team player names.
    So Ramsey should be able to play even tho he isnt in the 1st 25 (which I doubt)

  • Flint McCullough

    Adam & Shotta,

    I don’t know if it is etiquette to mention other blogs, but as I too only heard of UA, through ACLF, I am sure Tony will not mind.

    ACLF has always been excellently written. There are many fine contributors, like yourself Shotta, & many often interesting side conversations. However the site unfortunately has been overrun with d&gers with no backup argument & trolls etc as you say Shotta. Frank has a lively sense of humour (which may be an acquired taste), is great at getting at the twats & has also often excellent serious points to make.

    I sometimes join in a reasonable debate but ACLF is generally a bit too energetic for an oldie like me. I also find it somewhat rude when commenters totally ignore what Yogi has put a lot of time into a good piece.

    Untold & Darius’s Stone Cold Arsenal are forums with a smaller but on topic, generally well thought out comments,even though I may not always agree with everyone.

    I think we are all very much in debt to the likes of Tony & Co., Yogi & Darius for giving us such good reading on a favorite subject.