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Urawa Red Diamonds – Arsenal the final game of the Asia tour

By Walter Broeckx

And so we are entering the final day of our Asia tour already. Today another game and more about that in a few moments of course. But first let me see at what the tour has brought us so far.

Looking at the pictures, the first two visits were more of the sight seeing type and the selling of the image of the club. The fans both in Indonesia and Vietnam responded in an amazing way to the visit of the club we love and they also seem to love. I think the running man will be the ultimate example of love and devotion for the club. And the way the players responded and gave the running man not only the run of his life but also the day of his life is something that brings a warm feeling to the heart.

The games or should I say “show” was highly entertaining. I think lovers of beautiful football in Asia will have been charmed by our performances. I know the opposition is not of PL quality but still we did put up a nice show with high scores in the first two games. The third game against a team that is in the middle of their competition was also a good game. We had enough chances to again win it with a higher score but maybe because of the building up the training work the freshness was a bit gone at times.

Let us have a look at the players; I’m not going to talk about the established players now but focus more on the youngsters.  Akpom (spelled correctly this time?) has shown that at 17 years old he seems to be a highly promising attacker. Even being sick didn’t stop him from scoring a few goals. I don’t think he is already ready to go in to the PL this season but maybe a good loan spell to a club that is playing some football could help him a lot. Of course Wenger might decide to keep him at Arsenal and work on him in the training ground and bring him in the League cup games and then later on loans him out. But sure looks promising.

Other youngsters like Eisfeld and Ollson had their chances but didn’t catch the eye that much. Certainly their performances (which weren’t bad mind you) were somewhat overshadowed by the ssssshhhhh man as some other blogger called him the other day. And with this ssssssshhhh he meant that we shouldn’t praise him too much as it might put the other big clubs “on alert” or even on “red alert” [and let us not forget full red alert] as the common parlance of the football blogging community would have it.

What can you say about Gedion Zelalem apart from that he looks to be something special?   But I will join in the sssssshhhhh action from the rest and not turn too excited about him.

So all in all the football was good, the players were fine and some caught the eye. And today we will be playing the final game of the tour against the Urawa Red Diamonds.

What do we know about them? Well as good as nothing. I think that red is their main colour. Don’t know if they have anything to do with diamonds but their name seems to point at it. Oh and we do know that currently they are 4th in the J-League.  Five points behind the leaders who are Hiroshima.  Interestingly the team that are in 3rd place the Yokohoma Marinos just played Manchester United and the Japanese team won with 3-2.

By not having anything interesting to say about our opponents let us focus on Arsenal. Some players had a minor injury and were doubtful for this game. Koscielny, Szczesny and Oxlade-Chamberlain didn’t play against Nagoya and have some knocks and bruises. Koscielny is the biggest doubt and in case of doubt at this point of the season: don’t play him at all would be my way of thinking. And I think the same goes for Szczesny and The Ox. Just let them rest and heal their wounds a bit. The season is still in front of us and will be long and hard so better not to take any risks at the moment.

So I think the starting line up will be very similar to the one we used against Nagoya. And that would mean this formation

Fabianski

Jenkinson – Sagna – Per – Gibbs

Arteta – Ramsey – Rosicky

Theo – Giroud – Ryo

I think we will give Ryo another start, after all this is Japan and focusing on having Ryo out there is maybe a wise move. My biggest worry is that the Japanese camera men will all be zooming in on Ryo at every convenient and inconvenient moment of the game. And it drove me nuts in the earlier game and I fear a repeat of this. Please could someone inform them that we would rather see the ball moving while it is in play than looking at a player who isn’t even near to the ball. Cross our fingers.

And after the interval we will see the likes of Jack working further on his fitness after his ankle operation at the end of the season. And Podolski to carry a bit of the weight of the team amongst the youngsters. And well probably we will see the ssssshhhh player making his appearance at some time. And probably we will see him doing his passing routine on a few occasions where one masterful pass opens up a complete defence. I’m starting to drool already.

The final game in the Asia tour is about to start in a few hours time. I ‘m looking forward to it because well I look forward to each Arsenal game. Hope we finish the tour on a high so the players can fly home in a really good mood and spirit. And that the spirit was good can be seen on this short clip

Recent posts

The books…

The sites from the same team…

 

46 comments to Urawa Red Diamonds – Arsenal the final game of the Asia tour

  • kevin chima

    let them end the tour on a high note.then let the week start with suarez as an arsenal player and ofcourse,all will be well as fans will be happy

  • nicky

    Never let it be said that I was an impatient follower of our great Club.
    There have been rave notices about Chuba Akpom before and during Arsenal’s FEJBO (Far East Jolly Boys Outing, pronounced fejbo).
    He will be 18 in October.
    Walter suggests that the lad might be worked on at the training ground, selected for League Cup games and then loaned out.
    For Heaven’s sake, he’s about the age of Cesc and Jack Wilshere when they started playing first team football.
    If the boy is good enough, he’s old enough.

  • colario

    The seemingly shameless Suarez at Arsenal – no thank you. As far as I know the ‘story’ first appeared in the ‘sun!’. Yuk!

  • lewins3

    Bring back Suarez to our club we know he can do it

  • WalterBroeckx

    OK so I got the line up wrong. As usual… here it is:

    Fabianski, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Miquel, Arteta, Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Walcott, Giroud, Gnabry.

    Interesting Jack and Gnabry at the start. For the first time this season I think. Kos is back and Miquel and not Gibbs. I think to see how he copes from the start with Monreal being out

  • Bootoomee

    Arsenal just completed the victorious Asian tour with a 2-1 defeat of Urawa Red Diamonds. It was a very good game against a team that is active and 4th in the J-League.

    Akpom’s winning goal brought back the bad memories of Obafemi Martins’ at the League cup final.

    Looking forward to the trip to the Emirates cup (Sunday) with the wife and kids! Our tickets arrived yesterday.

  • Bootoomee

    Nicky,

    I agree. What’s all these Zelalem needs 3-5 years, Akpom needs 2-3 years all about? If they have been playing well along the 1st teamers, then they are good enough for the first team. Period!

    I kind of worry about Zelalem’s build but it hasn’t dampened his output one bit. I think it may actually work to his advantage just like Nwankwo Kanu’s.

    If they are good enough, then they are definitely old enough!

  • Mandy Dodd

    agree Bootoomee, the only caution I would add for these players is that we seem to have a horrendous injury record on youngsters (some inflicted by others I know) we throw in at the deep end, so though they may well be technically and mentally good enough to develop, I hope we handle them with care, or at least get our ex Rugby Union fitness coaches working with them. But great to have such players coming through, sure we will see more of them this year

  • WalterBroeckx

    That is my main worry for players like Akpom and Zelalem: injuries.
    Akpom as a centre forward will receive many kicks and this might cost him some severe injuries if he is not completely finished growing.
    Zelalem is the same a bit, he will be targeted by the older players who don’t like it when a young kid makes them look very average.

    I remember a few top players (and possible top players) whose career was hampered by returning injuries that according to a sports doctor I once spoke had a lot to do with having played the game too early at the highest level. A few names: Fabregas with his hamstrings, Jack and in Belgium the tragic case of Ludo Coeck who at 16 was in the team of Anderlecht won title after title but then his body gave up on him because of returning injuries and he then later tragically died in a car accident while fighting back for the umpteenth time from an injury when playing for Inter Milan.

    The doctor said they can only be thrown in the deep when their body has grown up completely. Before that you risk troubles

  • Bootoomee

    OK Walter, I understand. I do think that they can play league cup matches and other ties where the team is fairly safe. I mean games that we’re winning with about 10 minutes to go.

    I find it unfair that a player as good as Zelalem will have to wait for 3-5 years. The boy is too good for that. But I understand your position clearly and I (sadly) agree with you.

  • iniez

    Probably our toughest game today, and I’m glad for it. The other teams were very respectful and in line with the friendly match spirit. Heard on a podcast the other day from someone living in Japan that Urawa are basically the Japanese man united, in that everyone hates them. Well they certainly lived up to that in my eyes. Rather dirty play if you ask me. Even their manager looked scarily like rednose, mouthing off to the ref, it was uncanny lol. I loved how poldi put that mohawked fellow in place though. True poldi’s kick was a bit high but he made more than a meal of it. I’m really loving poldi, he’s not one to take fools lightly. Anyway this is the reality of football. Teams aren’t always honest and it’s good we got a taste of this to before the season begins. Good win against some decent opposition who’ve already started their season

  • bjtgooner

    Another enjoyable match with Arsenal playing some attractive football. Unfortunately our finishing was not as ruthless as it should have been, but overall it was a well deserved win to finish what appears to have been a very successful tour.

    I liked Akpom’s finish for the winning goal, while the opportunity arose from a defensive error he took the chance well with a nice crisp shot.

    Further, it was good to see Kos and the Ox recovered from injury.

  • nicky

    Walter,
    Your 3.37 makes a very valid point.
    I had not taken into account the injuries caused to the young, before they have finished growing.
    But will playing on loan in a lower division lessen the chance of injury?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    I really don’t know if the young are more injury prone ,but I would like to think its their naivety that gets them crocked.
    Remember him ?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5O4gj-Pr94

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Micky and Walter, gut feeling only because I haven’t got the stats to prove it but I don’t think playing in a lower league will in any way lessen the chance of injuries. The answer is proper protection from the referee and we all know the chances of that happening with an Arsenal player. I would very much like to see them included in the first team squad this season and used carefully from the bench but not against the more physical teams. For the most part thaw should be U21 players and should give that age group a much better chance of winning their league and lots of work with the fitness coaches to build up their strength.

  • sperez

    Suarez is a risk move because of his behaviour but he is a top class player. He will take the team to the next level and may be woth the risk. Arsenal don’t have any player of Suarez’ calibre.
    What I don’t understand is the sanctimonious attitude of some Arsenal fans. They seem to have forgotten that some Arsenal players were not exactly role models (some of them behaved worse than Suarez).

  • bjtgooner

    @Walter

    Just a quick thought – have you formed any impression on the standard of refereeing for our four far east games. I am not asking for detailed reports, just an overall impression if you have formed one. Many thanks.

  • nicky

    @Andrew C,
    A ref wouldn’t know a loanee was Arsenal-based, of course.
    My whole point was whether these young bloods of ours aren’t cosseted too much. We wouldn’t have yet seen Wilshere I’m sure. Or the OX. And how many years later would we have waited for Cesc?
    At the end of the day, Arsene and his medicos must surely know best but it doesn’t stop supporters querying the policy.

  • Bootoomee

    Sperez,

    Can you give examples of those Arsenal players who are unapologetic racists and serial biters please? If you want Suarez, just say so. Don’t drag the name of the club or our players in the mud to justify your desire.

  • soglorious

    Sperez, can’t you stay on the topic? How does a preseason friendly relate to the bid for suarez? Must you show your miniature level of reasoning EVERYTIME?

  • Jamie

    Please Walter or Tony do you guys have any stats on handballs (given and not given) for the past 2 seasons? I particularly need stats for Chelsea’s John Terry.

  • Goona Gal

    @ Walter – lovely jubbly article, I haven’t had a chance to watch all of the game just the highlights.

    @ Nicky – I will try to remember what FEJBO stands for in future. I reckon this year was a success, I really enjoyed the stuff on .com.

    @ Bootoomee – Yes, now that you mention it, the winning goal is reminiscent of the CC final! Though from the missed shots and bits of play that I saw, our win wasn’t unjustified.

    @ Bjtgooner – I agree that we were wasteful in the final third. It looked like Theo was playing as striker…

    @ iniez – It’s a smart way to end the tour with tougher opposition. I am really looking forward to watching the game at some point now.

  • Adam

    The whole point of pre-season for me was getting used to playing whilst knackered (due to the work load), so when you was fresh, everything clicks into place as you are switched on.

  • Dec

    The silence from Sperez when asked for examples of his claim is deafening.
    As usual, all bluster and zero substance.

  • Pat

    Bootoomee,

    You are right, Sperez is talking rubbish as usual.

    However, about Suarez – I remember on this web site – and even fleetingly in the press – one or two people gave somewhat different versions of what occurred between Suarez and Evra than the one that was repeated again and again in the media.

    It may be that this confrontation was not as one sided as it was made to appear.

    As to the biting – I think it was Jermaine Defoe who bit someone a year or two back and did not get a ten match ban.

    So I think Suarez may have been dealt with in a disproportionate manner.

    And in a lot of this, it has to be remembered that English is not his native language and that things may seem worse than they really are.

    I’m not just saying this because of the talk about him joining Arsenal – I remember following things closely at the time and thinking, there’s more to this than meets the eye.

  • Goona Gal

    I agree with all that’s been said about young player development. Ultimately I believe if you are good enough then you are old enough but it also true that teenagers are still developing their bodies and so not conditioned for the harsh realities of football in the premier league week in week out. Even though it was a friendly match, we saw how Zelalem was barged off the ball against Indonesia – which had to of left a few bruises on his undeveloped body.

    Last year I was dismayed to see what went on with Raheem Sterling(yeah I know he plays for Liverpool), where he went from playing a few junior football matches every other week a times, to playing intense Premiership & European games twice a week with little recovery time. It was no surprise to me that he picked up injuries and half way through the season, Brendan Rodgers admitted that the player was burnt out. That is poor player management in my opinion, especially of a young teenage prospect whose key asset right now is speed. You would of thought that they would of learnt from what happened to Micheal Owen to be honest.

    At the end of the day though, players need to play competitive football if they are to improve but sending players out on loan to lower leagues pose their own risks. I’ve been to games and watched old,less talented, near-the-end-of-their-career players really stick the boot into young inexperienced ‘wonderkids’ as they are desperate to not be shown up and want to intimidate the players into not trying any fancy footwork that will leave them exposed and red faced. The ref should provide protection but quite often doesn’t. Also the ref and crowd are aware of what players are on loan and also who their parent club is (this sometimes announced over the tannoy & info figures in match day programmes. Its just my opinion, but I have felt that Arsenal players even at youth level get rough justice. Rather than have a word with the over physical and aggressive player putting in late tackles, the ref will wave play on because ‘everyone knows Arsenal players are a bit soft’. Though it can also be reasonably argued that lower leagues in most countries are less technical and much more physical.

    So it can be a difficult decision for a manager to make whether to keep a player at the club or loan out and in the case of players like Theo,Jack & Alex OC, it doesn’t help when Arsene Wenger is trying to manage their physical and psychological progress they get called up for every junior and senior national match game going.

  • Stuart

    I don’t agree that playing the younger players in the senior team asap is always the best idea as I would think there is a significant advantage to having them remain in the youth teams to play with the other up and coming talent who would see a greater benefit to their own development. Secondly, the players will be familiar with each other. I see playing the players in the senior team too early sometimes as a form of mortgaging our future. This is seen all too often in the England football team where as soon as we have a good prospect there, they are fast tracked into the first team and no longer get to play and develop with their own age group so they work in complete harmony when they all eventually are in the first team. I would agree that this is not vitally important in club football all the time however it is still quite an issue.

  • Bootoomee

    Pat,

    You are giving Suarez a lot of unearned and undeserved benefit of the doubt; I am not.

    When he used his hand to stop Ghana’s goal at the world cup, I said: well, he was just being patriotic and doing his all to advance his country. Then he celebrated the missed penalty and I saw a despicable human being. A little self control couldn’t hurt and I’m sure that many people saw him in a bad light after that celebration.

    I just checked out Defoe’s incident (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzXBSvngRR0) but I don’t see that as a bite. Sorry but there was no evidence. It looked more like a head butt or coming together but whatever it was, we understand the context (and you can’t argue about how annoying Mascherano’s tackle was). Suarez grabbed and chewed on Ivanovic’s arm in a typical and fair tussle! I just cannot see the equivalence in cause and effect of both cases. Besides he had done this before in an even less “spur of the moment” circumstance at Ajax. The guy is crazy! Even children stop biting before they are 10.

    The racism bit is the ultimate issue for me and I’ve been hearing all sorts of rationalisation from some gooners as soon as the rumour of Arsenal interest started. I call outright bullshit on all the sudden revisionism.

    If in my country, Chinese people are called by a local slang that no one considered offensive and I then go to a different country, call a chinese person by this slang and the host country gets offended, I will apologise that I did not know that the slang is offensive, show remorse and apologise to the person that I directed it to. This is the right thing to do even if the person had provoked me in the first place. Suarez was never sorry, showed no remorse and made no effort (even if only for the cameras) for reconcilliation.

    For me, Suarez will be Arsene’s worst mistake as Arsenal manager if he signs him, and I don’t care if he single handedly win all the competitions we are in 13/14 season.

    I trust Arsene Wenger, as a manager and a human being. I don’t believe that he will sign Suarez. Anyway, I hope he doesn’t.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Injuries are a serious issue with young players in the past maybe for good reasons we have overplayed these guys to the detriment to themselves and the team lets not repeat the cesc and jack experiences. No doubt the pgmol will do their bit as well as they always do …

  • Stroller

    @Bootoomee
    Surely the die is already cast regarding the morality of signing Suarez. The club has already put in two bids and it’s not realistic to believe that Arsene Wenger disagrees with this. If Suarez doesn’t join it will be down to the practicalities of getting agreement with Liverpool and the player, not a change of heart concerning his character.

    I respect your feelings about Suarez, but can’t see how how the mistake will be buying him, rather than showing interest in the first place.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Take the time to read this very fine article .

    10 Common Misconceptions About Money- By Stacy Johnson

    I recently celebrated my 57th birthday, and have arrived at a common conclusion about getting older: It sucks. But there’s one good thing that comes with age – the wisdom that can only come from experience.
    Experience helps you understand how life actually works, and how remarkably different life is from the kind you so often see portrayed in commercials, movies, and daydreams.
    Prime example? Money. The myths surrounding money are numerous and widely held, especially among the young. It’s a shame, because pursuing myths will lead you astray, waste your time and, taken to extremes, ruin your life.
    Here are 10 popular misconceptions about money that experience has taught me are more often fiction than fact…

    1. The more money I have, the happier I’ll be.
    Let’s ask Howard Hughes, Anna Nicole Smith, John Belushi, Chris Farley, Marilyn Monroe, Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain, and Elvis about this one. OK, guys, show of hands… did fame and fortune make you happy?
    Happiness comes from liking yourself, something completely unrelated to money. Riches buys recognition, too often confused with validation. But respect, especially self-respect, isn’t for sale.
    When you’re on your death-bed, will you be thinking about money? If so, your contribution to the gene pool was negligible. Rather than obsessing about money, think about what really makes you happy. Then make only enough money to take part in those activities. Making more is a waste of the only non-renewable resource you have: your time on the planet.

    2. A big income will keep me out of debt.
    What’s the difference between someone who makes $50,000 a year with a $100,000 mortgage and someone who makes $500,000 a year with a $1 million mortgage? Answer: nothing. Unless they have money set aside for emergencies, they’re both a paycheck away from disaster.
    Debt often rises with income. What keeps you out of debt isn’t a high income or net worth. It’s not borrowing money.

    3. Millionaires drive fancy cars, wear fancy clothes, and live in fancy houses.
    Not according to the folks who did a bunch of research and wrote The Millionaire Next Door. According to their studies, the average American millionaire drives an unexciting American car, lives in the same nondescript house they’ve owned for years, and avoids designer labels. That’s how they became millionaires.
    So who’s buying all the designer clothes and Porches? Many times it’s people who will never become wealthy because they’re swapping tomorrow’s financial freedom for today’s appearance. As I’m fond of saying, life affords you the opportunity to either look rich or be rich, but few live long enough to accomplish both. The younger you decide, the better.

    4. The more money I have, the less worries I’ll have.
    Balderdash. Money doesn’t end anxiety. It gives you something else to be anxious about: losing your money. Granted, those without enough money to eat or keep a roof over their heads have lots to worry about.
    But once you have enough money for all your needs and a reasonable number of your desires, the excess will add to your concerns, not alleviate them.

    5. Money will help me find love.
    In my experience with women, they’re not attracted to money. They are, however, attracted to ambition and intelligence, especially when it presents as humor. Everyone’s attracted to people who are self-confident, non-needy, and able to laugh at themselves.
    Like a peacock, wealthy people can easily attract attention. But attention isn’t the same as admiration or affection. And even if it works, do you really want to spend your life with someone so shallow and insecure they were attracted to your money?

    6. I’ll have more fun if I have more money.
    When I was young, I didn’t have two nickels to rub together, but I had a ton of fun. Today I have lots of nickels – and am happy to report, still having a riot.
    There’s no doubt that money can furnish the elements of a good time. But if you need money to have fun, you’re boring. And should you become a billionaire, you’ll still be boring.

    7. Money means security.
    When you boil it down, a primary purpose of money is to make life more predictable. It allows you to control your environment by being prepared for the unexpected.
    While that’s partly true, there’s not enough money in the world to completely control everything. I could have a heart attack and die before I finish writing this, and you could have one before you finish reading it. Accept that we’re all bobbing on a sea of uncertainty, no matter how much money we have.

    8. Money will enable me to meet interesting people.
    In my experience, you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting interesting people. But if I want to maximize my odds of meeting someone worth knowing, I won’t be heading to the nearest country club.
    I’ve met plenty of fun and interesting rich people – but I’ve also met rich people who were vain, myopic, pretentious, and judgmental. They weren’t that way because they were rich. They were that way because they were born rich and as a result never had to overcome adversity.
    Overcoming adversity is what makes people interesting, not how much money they have. People without at least a few skeletons in the closet are often shallow as a puddle.

    9. I need money to travel, and travel is important.
    The world is an interesting place, and being well-traveled makes you interesting. But travel comes in many forms, including the budget variety. If you want to see faraway places, you’ll find a way.
    In my book Life or Debt, I conclude by describing the first book I ever read about something I love: sailing. The book was about a couple who built their own sailboat and traveled around the world, working when they needed to and never accumulating more than a few thousand dollars at a time. Their boat had no air conditioning, no refrigerator – not even a radio.
    What most people do in the same situation is wait until they have enough money to buy what amounts to a floating condo: a boat that’s luxurious, seaworthy, and far too expensive to ever actually buy. The result is they spend their lives on the dock. What a waste.

    10. Money will buy friends.
    This is not only untrue, it’s the opposite of what money actually does. I’ve got a super-rich friend or two, and what I’ve observed is that money attracts plenty of hangers-on – but almost no friends.
    People with vast wealth or fame can’t trust the motives of those surrounding them (see No. 5 above). That’s why the people they count as true friends are normally either people they knew before they were rich and famous, or people who are equally rich and famous.
    There’s the advantage of being judged on your personality versus your net worth: The friends that result actually like you, not what you can do for them.

    How happy a man is,is not how much he has but how little he needs.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Taking a chill pill .

    As I’ve aged, I’ve become kinder to myself, and less critical of myself. I’ve become my own friend.

    I have seen too many dear friends leave this world, too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

    Whose business is it, if I choose to read, or play, on the computer, until 4 AM, or sleep until noon? I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 50, 60 & 70’s, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love, I will.

    I will walk the beach, in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves, with abandon, if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set. They, too, will get old.

    I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And, I eventually remember the important things.

    Sure, over the years, my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break, when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody’s beloved pet gets hit by a car? But, broken hearts are what give us strength, and understanding, and compassion A heart never broken, is pristine, and sterile, and will never know the joy of being imperfect.

    I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.

    As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don’t question myself anymore. I’ve even earned the right to be wrong.

    So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day (if I feel like it).

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Quote from Warren Buffet – ” Be fearful when others are greedy, and be greedy when others are fearful” …
    When others are greedy, apply risk management…

  • Brickfields Gunners

    The following was developed as a mental age assessment by the School of Psychiatry at Harvard University .

    Take your time and see if you can read each line aloud without a mistake.

    The average person over 45 years of age cannot do it!

    1. This is this cat.

    2. This is is cat.

    3. This is how cat.

    4. This is to cat.

    5. This is keep cat.

    6. This is an cat.

    7. This is old cat.

    8. This is fart cat.

    9. This is busy cat.

    10. This is for cat.

    11. This is forty cat.

    12. This is seconds cat.

    Now go back and read the third word in each line from the top down.

    I bet you cannot resist passing it on..
    Damn !

  • The Ruler 777

    Zelalem looks amazing, when he works on his build he should be top class, I feel he could even contribute now though.

  • Adam

    Brickfields, you really brighten my day’s.

  • Bootoomee

    Stroller,

    I’m sorry but there is no evidence of Arsenal interest. Yes, there have been noise from Liverpool end but I only believe what I hear officially from the AFC.

    Now, before I look like a hypocrite for complaining about Suarez when the club haven’t officially confirmed any interest, my tirades have been directed at gooners, especially those that I respect, who have been contorting themselves into knots to justify the potential arrival of Suarez. All of a sudden I started hearing stuff like:

    – The racist incident wasn’t conclusive and Evra (who I personally don’t like) was the asshole who goaded Suarez into it. And soon. This is outright bullshit and utter nonsense.

    – The serial biting is not so bad because some people have bitten someone in the past too. Yes, the bar has been set so low!

    – Suarez is so great and he will win us trophies, you know like that world class player Arshavin did!

    – Wenger (the psychiatrist?) will cure him.

    – And other silly and hypocritical rationalisations.

    I think this may just be strategic bidding to get Real Madrid involved. I don’t get it but it makes more sense to me than Arsene signing this guy for £40million. It is just against everything that I know about Arsene Wenger and Arsenal. Of course I may be wrong.

  • Goona Gal

    I’ve watched the game now and I have to say that far from being the pub team as described in the press, Urawa were more akin to a premier league team actually. They were quite physical and pressed us hard, which was quite different to Grampus.

    I can’t say Theo’s poor finishing in front of goal, Sagna’s first half performance as RB or Wilshere filled me with cheer. I was shocked that one of the commentators on .com said he thought Jack had a brilliant game when nothing could be further from the truth. As the player decided to run straight into traffic almost every time he was given the ball, when he should of passed the ball to Alex OC (who didn’t do too badly in midfield). This caused us to lose shape, he allowed the opposition to ghost past him and put pressure on the back four.

  • Goona Gal

    On the upside, I thought Fabinaski was very good once again and I would prefer that he start the season in goal based on the performances I have seen so far. He looks confident and his assured decision making has meant that he has importantly gained the trust of Per & Kos.

    Gnabry to me, is ready to play with the first team on a regular basis and his performance yesterday showed just how good he is. He never gave up on loose balls, demonstrated his quick thinking and looked very dangerous with the ball at his feet. He is such an exciting player who can play on the right and left, has ability beyond his years and is much more deserving of gushing praise and attention this tour than has been given to him. He really needs to be tied down to a long contract now because there is obviously so much more to come from him.

    Finally my MoTM goes to Iggy Miquel who played the whole 90 mins at LB. He didn’t dip in concentration or endeavor, as right to the very end he put Urawa under pressure. Defensively he has gotten braver and is more than willing to get stuck in to cut out an attack and the left did not seem weak at all with him in that position. He definitely deserves his promotion to the first team.

  • Goona Gal

    @ Bootoomee – I have to admit I feel the same as you about Suarez. The only upside is that Brendan Rogers now know/remembers that Arsenal are not the small little club he can disrespect. RE: The Sahin situation, BR thought he had got one over on us when he circumvented the players move to us. He offered silly loan fee money of around £7m approx and then demonstrated that he knew very little about the player himself by where he played him. It was clearly Rodgers believing his own hype that he was a manager on Arsene Wenger’s level and that Arsenal are kind of club that you can take the micky out with no blow back. Oh how the worm has turned.

  • Bootoomee

    Goona Gal,

    I don’t blame Brendan Rogers. I blame the British press and their acute short-sightedness. He had an average season as a manager of Swansea, played some decent football for a season and he is on the same level as Wenger, who they never really liked anyway. It is an indication of BR’s limited intelligence that he bought into the hype.

    On Suarez, it is personal for me. This is the first time ever, that I will be so strongly against a potential action of Arsenal FC. I hope that he NEVER gets to wear the Arsenal shirt. I won’t be able to do anything about it but it will hurt me to no end.

  • Goona Gal

    @ Bootoomee – Rodgers is living the dream really as he is a journeyman championship manager who hit the jackpot. Martinez apparently laid the foundation at Swansea which Rodgers reaped. Finishing mid table in the premiership is him excelling beyond his wild imagination. Inexplicably Rodgers enjoys the same protection as Martin O’Neil, where as Arsene Wenger is lambasted for the slightest of things.

  • bjtgooner

    @Goona Gal

    I watched the game live on ESPN, apart from a number of breaks in transmission & have not yet had time to re-watch. However, I agree with you about Wilshere, he tried hard, but he was not always using his brain. It could be he just needs games or it could be the specter of Zelalem is upsetting him. Either way, the preseason is the ideal time for squad shake down. But in general, when Ramsey & Arteta are playing, our midfield looks much more solid. Lets hope Jack gets back to form quickly.

  • Goona Gal

    @ bjtgooner – it’s funny that you mention Zelalem, as this crossed my mind too. Jack loves being called the heir to Cesc and now this kid has come along and put that under pressure. Jack is trying too hard, but not in a way that benefits the team. We need Jack on top form as we know how good he can be and how important this is to our successful season but he has to accept competition. Even if he is part of our British core, he still has to put in performances that justify a starting spot or even a place on the bench.

  • soglorious

    Bricksfield, mate you are amazing! Start writting for untold. Tony, sign this guy up to give us articles that brightens the day amidst the stormy transfer times.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Yeah ,Tony . sign him up ! Pay him too ! Ooopss !