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Win nice, win ugly, we seem to be doing it all

By Walter Broeckx

 

Our win against Southampton yesterday was not just a win. We were playing a team that could come level with us on top of the PL.

 

Now I do wonder how many pundits would have predicted this scenario at the start of the season? Do I see any fingers raised? Don’t think so. And to be honest you don’t really need to be afraid for missing that. After all, how many people would have predicted Southampton being up there with the big boys after 11 games in the season?  Not many. But here they were just 3 points behind Arsenal after 11 games played.

 

Of course in a way Southampton has it a bit easier at times. Nobody expects them there so no real pressure on them. As for Arsenal…well nobody of the pundits expected them to be there neither. Of course we at Untold always hoped we would be there top of the league. But that is of course because we are just a bunch of overoptimistic Gooners. But that is just part of the fun I think. What is the use of predicting gloom and doom before the season? Will it change the season? Will it make us better? Not really I think.

 

But not many people could have thought of the importance of this game when the fixtures were announced a few months ago. Southampton had travelled to Manchester United and got a draw. They travelled to Liverpool and won the game. Now I must say that I had seen that game for a large part and I was impressed by the way they played that game.  So they had gone to grounds of top teams and showed real quality in their game and on the score board at the final whistle.

 

Yesterday we have seen why. They are a quality team. A team that can fight for each other and can have some great results. Their weakness is obviously scoring goals. They are the lowest scoring team of the top 6. But on the other hand they only conceded 5 goals in 11 games!  That is a remarkable low number.  And one of their goals against was a fluke goal against Stoke when Begovic did what he usually does: just hoof the ball up field and to everybody’s surprise it just bounced in the Southampton goal.   So that is their strong point: defending well and all over the field.

 

So we knew before the game we wouldn’t be in for a walk in the park. We maybe would have imagined that at the start of the season but this was a match with the first place in the league table at stake.

 

So it would be a tight affair. And that is what we got. It was important to not make any mistakes. And that is what we did. Apart from Arteta missing a clearance and the ball bouncing in front of the feet of a Southampton player we were good in defending.

 

That is becoming a strength of this team it seems. What is very interesting is that after 12 games we conceded 10 goals so far. And 3 of those goals came from penalties. That is 30%. So if we would have been a bit more careful in our defending we could and should have avoided those penalties a bit more.

 

So if we take away those 3 goals we see that we conceded 7 other goals. One as a result from a corner the other week. And that was when captain Per was not aboard the Arsenal ship. I’m still very much convinced of the fact that we wouldn’t have lost at Old Trafford if Per would have been out there. I cannot prove it of course, but I really believe it. When Per is there, the whole team just is defending in a well organised way. Is this just down to Per? No of course not. It is something that the whole team needs to get credit for. It starts with Giroud up front. And to what up front defending can lead could be seen in this game. If he wouldn’t have bothered to close down the keeper as he did, we wouldn’t have taken the lead. That is something we have to give him a lot of credit for. It was his hard work and he got rewarded for his hard work.

 

As was the whole team. All the players deserve a lot of credit for their defensive work. We seem to have lost Arteta in this game with an injury. If all goes well Flamini could step in his place as he was suspended today. And that shouldn’t give us a problem for the next games. People could say that Flamini is an even more aggressive version of Arteta.

 

But also the likes of Wilshere and Ramsey deserve some praise for their defensive work. Certainly when Arteta went off. And good old Rosicky came on and worked his socks off. As usual one could say. But that also is great because he still is very hungry and determined to help his team out when things are going difficult.

 

I think attitude is very important. And the whole team is showing a great attitude this season. It is as if all the players are determined to do all they can to get good results. And as long as we can keep that determination, we should be fine.

 

A determination combined with the skill and vision of players like Özil and Cazorla. And now with the speed of Walcott back in the team we can add another thing to the team. Now is a great time of being a Gooner.

 

Let us just enjoy it and get behind the team. They have done their bit so far this season. Now is the time to support them every minute of every game. Come on you Gunners!

22 comments to Win nice, win ugly, we seem to be doing it all

  • Well said,let’s keep d faith.

  • Super Singh

    This year the team is most definatly pulling together, and if I’m not mistaken we have only lost five league games so far this year. Under rated?

  • yeah, we won the game with some fluke goals, that what my friends said. How many fluke goals have we concends in recent time? That what make a champion, you win ugly or you win good. I dont care how we win our game as long as we get the three point.

  • Yassin

    Fluke goals, they were lucky not to concede two brilliant goals, thanks to the post.

  • soglorious

    As the final whistle was blown yesterday, a chelsea fan watching the game besides me (my brother) said “Arsenal WILL win a trophy this year”. I never asked why but I know he’s saying the truth. If you noticed, we played just as we played Dortmund away cos Southampton are the Premier League’s version of Dortmund due to the way they press up-field. Unfortunately, both lost their games yesterday.
    Kudos to the team and I think “Clappingboard” has no choice than to give the penalty so as to cover up for all his failings earlier in the game.
    Onwards and Upwards. We remain on top. We are the GUNNERS

  • Mandy Dodd

    A good three points against a tricky opponent who made it hard for us to play to traditional strengths. This Southampton team already have and will continue to take points off the big boys this win has to be set in that context. We are becoming a very solid team defensively , there really is something a bit special about these guys and cult heros and fan favourites are emerging none more so than our BFG. The keeper is also starting to look not only good but consistent. Maybe contrary to reports of last year this team represents some sort of harmony in the coaching staff as well wenger and bould could be an awesome combination. Congratulations so far all round top of the league at for USA traditionally tough time of year

  • Mandy Dodd

    Above…. For us a traditionally tough time of year

  • alex

    I wait to read the ref analysis of this game because seems people are giving to much credit to sotton.

    Felt Wanyama got away without being penalised.Only one yellow card but I don’t think he merited to stay in the pitch for 90 min.

    Same as Stoke the season before they where not conceding many goals.They were pulling and shoving opponents at will . Once other players start complaining refs star to take notice.

    Is it one off the peno conceded against us ?
    Time will tell.
    Some label this game as an ugly win . To me it was game won showing resiliency and fighting spirit. Was a very physical demanding and the team responded well. Note also we are the top of the table (early) and it is not fluke. Deserved fully.

  • nicky

    In the middle and late 1930s’ When Arsenal were the top club in England, they were known as “Lucky”. Good things happened in their favour, sometimes against the run of play.
    I saw that yesterday when Giroud did the Parisian “Folies” with the Southampton goalie.
    Too early to record a deja vu but it’s not that far off.

  • colario

    Spuds losing 3-0 at half time with another goalie error. So much for our needing a ‘top class GK’. The only one giving a top class performance each game is our Szczesny! 🙂

  • GoingGoingGooner

    5-0 now. Should keep them quiet for a few days.

  • GoingGoingGooner

    I was hoping for a draw…not likely now.

  • para

    Well done lads, a win we needed.
    All in all i am satisfied at the win, but i thought we were having a training session really and could have made it 4 goals if the two had gone in.
    I find we are not really taking advantage of our games, i know we have CL next week and this reflected in our game yesterday.
    Hope our injured players are back soon and we can have a bit more selection headache.
    See City are taking spuds apart, is 5.0 now.

  • TommieGun

    Well off topic, I know I said yesterday that a draw between Spuds and City would be very nice, but I actually wouldn’t mind Spuds getting a 7 up their *****.

    😛

  • Gord

    I think it may keep them quiet for a few minutes. Well, maybe Cardiff can win today?

    I am not really crazy about HereIsTheCity as a website. The odd article that seems okay, but far too many just looking to churn things up. But, they have a blurb about Joel Campbell (on loan to Olympiakos) and a video of a goal he scored. I don’t view videos, so I’ve no idea what it shows.

    http://hereisthecity.com/en-gb/2013/11/24/arsenal-loan-starlet-campbell-scores-a-sensational-and-freakish/

    The Mirror doesn’t like Giroud’s haircut. On Friday, the Mirror also had a story about UEFA and Financial Fair Play. They are investigating 6 clubs for breaking FFP regulations: Vitoria (Portugal), Metalurg Donetsk (Ukraine), Skonto (Latvia), Slask Wroclaw (Poland), Pandurii Targu Jiu (Romania) and Petrolul Ploiesti (Romania).

    No URL, as I’ve used my one for the Joel Campbell link.

    What, those 6 combined spend what fraction of what Man City does? Half? A third? It doesn’t look like UEFA is going to be putting any serious effort in FFP. The billionarie clubs will still spend as they please, and the Spanish government will still subsidize Real Madrid and Barcelona.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Correct Gord no serious efforts at all on FFP for the big boys. Will trust them if they ever go for the likes of PSG but the article below explains just one of many reasons why they will not. http://www.totalfootballforums.com/forums/topic/75566-platinis-son-takes-up-role-with-psg-owners/

    It will take the likes of us utd the German clubs breaking away from eufa to get anything done. Cannot rely on the Spanish as the quataris now sponsor barca

    Looks like the refs helping utd again today

  • Gord

    Thank you Cardiff!

    More Champions League (our group). Hamsik is out for Napoli. Ayew is out for Marseille. Apparently Manuel Friedrich is not elligible to play for Dortmund against Napoli.

    The BBC has a page on the recent FA Women’s Football awards:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/25061165

    Liverpool dominated the awards. This is probably realistic, as I believe that Liverpool is the only team practicing nominally every day.

    The only awards to Arsenal, was Steph Houghton getting Goal of the Year. Congratulations to Steph on that 25 yard strike against Lincoln. Alex Scott from Arsenal received a commemorative gold cap in hour of achieving 100 caps for England.

  • OMGArsenal

    This team is a collection of workmen, nothing spectacular (with the exception of Ozil) and a group that just seem to get on with the job, day in and day out. I am beginning to think that our opponents were taking us for granted and when we turned them over, they woke up and suddenly appreciated us with a great deal of chagrin. Dortmund’s Klopp said it best when he warned teams that Arsenal can beat anyone…including his team….as they tend to sneak up on you and whack you when you aren’t looking (on the counter, right off you attacking them). If we can keep this up, there will be a few embarrassed pundits in May.

  • Pat

    Pretty skilful workmen, I would say. Workmen at the top of their profession. Remember the goal of the season?

  • jambug

    OMGArsenal

    I can see where you are coming from but I do think you are selling us a bit short, in fact quite I bit short. But hey, ‘workmen like’ will do me if it takes us all the way to the title !!!

  • ARSENAL 13

    Workmen or not, scoring 2.33 point per game (thanx to Sammy the snake) cannot be counted as fluke, lucky or undeserving…..

    Wenger is tactically naive (Is he Sperez????)…..Well, up the %^&$ you shit heads.

    Yesterday, during ManCity game, a pundit says -“Title is between ManCity and Chelsea, but if Arsenal keeps winning games then we’ll have to take them seriously.” What???……hhahahhahahha. A team that has won the most points is not being taken seriously.

  • TommieGun

    More like Men @ Work hahaha….

    @ Gord – I can easily understand Campbell’s header – it’s the same goalpost that denied us TWICE with Jack and Ramsay’s efforts, so to be fair we are still owed one freakish goal-post deflected goal in our favor …