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July 2021

One of those days in north London; time to let the clichés out of the bag

Untold Arsenal on Twitter @UntoldArsenal

By Walter Broeckx

The Wolverhampton match was a tin can-game. More on that later when we come to the analyzing part.  First unpleasant thing was the absence of Walcott. I know some fans don’t appreciate him and say he is a waste of place. I disagree on this. I feel with his pace up front we always have something extra. Even if he has a not that good game he frightens his opponents and other can capitalize on this.  Benayoun took his place and he did fine but he surely lacks the speed of Walcott and so the Wolves defenders didn’t have to take care of that part of the game.

Ramsey got a rest and Rosicky came in and had a decent game. Song came back from suspension and he had to adapt a bit I felt. I do think he is one of those players who benefits from each game he can get and from a run of games.  Djourou came back at right back.

We started bright and with lots of possession and we took our first real chance. Gervinho ran in to space and the pass from Benayoun was inch perfect. Gervinho stayed calm turned around the goal keeper and put the ball in the net.  I then had the impression that we thought the game was won. Wolves never looked threatening our goal in the first half, come to think of it in the entire game I think.

The one thing we lacked was a spark to go for the second goal. We just tried to control the game without going deep enough. We still had a few chances and then it was clear to see that their goal keeper was having a splendid day. A low shot from Van Persie to the near post was turned in corner with a brilliant reflex safe low to the ground.

While we fell asleep Wolves got a corner and when the ball was headed away, the second ball came to a Wolves player on the edge of the penalty area who took a shot that got deflected of the onrushing defenders and fell on the head of Fletcher who to his surprise saw the ball ending up in the back of the Arsenal goal.  The way the goal came out of nothing really should have rung the alarm bells for the “one of those days” games. We all have seen such games before and well we probably will see some more in our lives.  We woke up and doubled our effort but Wolves at that moment had gone for the parking the big bus in front of their goal.

The second half was (without having seen the details back) a game of the ref who started losing control of the game a bit. Some strange decisions at times (come to think of it also happened in the first half in fact). Low point for me was the shambles between Song and Henry. Henry lunging in with his studs showing at the stomach of Song and the ref not giving a foul, Song was so angry he also took a few shots at the Wolves players that surrounded him and this time the ref blew the foul.  In my live match report I said at that time that the ref was losing the game and that accidents could happen.

They  almost did when Milijas came in with a stud showing tackle and an outstretched leg against Arteta. I think the ref won some points in the ref review with finally giving a red card.

For the rest it was at times a game of Arsenal V Hennessey. With the keeper always on the right place and with amazing stops on the line.  We did all we could to win the game but Wolves keeper Hennessey was just amazing. With superb reflexes he just kept the ball out of his goal. Looking at the other results a frustrating result. But football is won by goals and not by shots and chances. You must convert them into goals and in this department we failed on the day.

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So all that is left for us today is to open a whole lot of tin cans from which we can take all the clichés or stereotypes we can find. I just opened a can with : “it wasn’t our day” and added ”It just didn’t happen”.  In another tin can I found: “the goal keeper had a wonder game” and “ that is what he is being paid for”.  A third can had the following in it: “If you don’t score, you can’t win” and “You got to take your chances to win the game”.

And so I can find a few other tin cans filled with such stereotypes. The disappointing thing is that we didn’t get the 3 points we deserved. But this is football and those things happen in football. Time for the team to put this right in the next home game on new year’s eve. The good thing is that the team really worked hard and gave it all. And this is all I can ask as a Gooner. That the players do their best and well if things don’t work out we can’t really blame them for their lack of effort. They showed passion and effort today. Sometimes it just isn’t our day (just opened another can – oh now it was the same can)

Time for the team to show that they can lift themselves after this disappointing result and one thing is for sure: I’m sure the team can put this right. They have come back from worse in the past. Come one you Gunners.

PS: I tried to avoid the ref in this article as I think we will have enough time in the next days to have a closer look at his decisions.



26 comments to One of those days in north London; time to let the clichés out of the bag

  • Brickfields Gunners

    When the Gervinho goal went in I was thinking that the floodgates were going to open ,with RVP getting a hattrick – but
    for some reason we went into a shell and Wolves scored.
    While we started the second half well it became apparent that it was going to be one- of- those -days-game.
    I do agree with you that Walcott would have scared the shit out of those Wolves defenders with his pace .I do admit sometimes he does get me mad at him for his poor choice of pass or cross, but we are different with him in the team.

  • Hmm wot i can i say if only the ref had done us a favor like the way they do to the manures it would have been a nice day.
    But that is gone lets focus on QPR Hopefully that thug Barton wont be on the team. Gunners lets keep the fire burning.HAPPY NEW YEAR

  • samuel

    You go to be joking as Rosicky and ben Ayoun in place of Walco
    tt and Ramsey made all the difference,however just like the
    match commentators said the pace was way to slow from Arsenal
    allowing Wolves to sit back and wait for Arsenal to come foward
    so after scoring a goal in the 8 th minute the two main culprits
    van Persie and Gervinho couldn,t get any more 89 mins.later whe
    re,s Bendtner as he,s very much needed to take the goal scoring
    burden off van Persie,s shoulders ?

  • nicky

    Not at all surprised at the loss of 2 points. Just the sort of game when, over its long history, Arsenal will consistently fail to prosper. I await a “top 5 match” when we will be racked with injuries and suspensions, away from home and down to 9 men. In that sort of situation, we would play like heroes and win.
    Supporting Arsenal is simply NOT for the fainthearted.

  • Stuart

    I thought we sold cliche to man city ha ha ha ha! Sorry, couldn’t resist 🙂

  • eatid

    shocking mistake from wenger today. he talks up chamberlain and park on then does not even play them.

    we were missing the pace of walcott yet in chamberlain and ryo we have 2 players with pace to burn and eager to get match time.

    also need to get this crappy calendar year record thing out of the way, it is messing with rvp.

    when did calendar year records start to count for anything? probably since we cannot win f all else.

  • bob

    although we were unlucky not to score, wengers now weakened the team with the loss of cesc and nasri to such a point that unfortunately we will be battling for 5th in the end…

    shame spurs have more ambition than us these days 🙁

  • Arsenal seem to be at the wrong end of wonder/freak goals more than all the teams put together. But then I follow Arsenal more than all the other teams in the world put together.
    Inspired and heroic rival goalkeeping displays, dodgy decisions, calamitous defensive errors- you name it, we have faced it. Most of the matches that we have drawn or lost in the recent past have been due notoriously freak incidents. Is it just co-incidence/accident every time? It borders on the absolutely incredible.
    Poor managers and players…I can’t stand this, don’t know what it will be like for them!

  • Mandy Dodd

    I think this is the sort of game when we really miss our attacking FBs. Yes we did a lot of attacking but with Theo and these players missing, we lacked width and pace.Wolves just seemed to put 10 men in and around the pen area.
    On any other day, we would have won, but it seems again, injuries are taking their toll. How many years is that we have been pretty much top of the injury league?
    Seems like the media sharpening their knives for Wenger….very premature

  • WalterBroeckx

    Agree with you Mandy Dodd about the attacking full backs. The problem is that both Djourou and Vermaelen as central defenders are more comfortable in the middle of the field. And most of the time that is where they run to when they get the ball. The over lapping runs from Sagna-Jenkinson or Santos-Gibbs are much missed.

  • walter

    And I hate to say it but I think Vermaelen is a bit affected by having to play at left back.
    Last game a mistake against Villa and yesterday he looked very agitated at times and unhappy.
    I do think a left back would be very helpful to sort this out and get him back playing in the middle and rotating the central defenders a bit

  • bob

    To bob @10:05,
    Can I have my name back, please? *just spell yours backwards so there’s no mistaking me for leaving the lump of coal you so gleefully dumped in our christmas stocking. To your Manurish deposit on our pitch, I carol thee, spud, with unseasonal greetings: “DRECK your halls with balls of folly…”
    No ambition, you say? Bollocks to that. Go Gunners!

  • Sammy The Snake

    For all those complaining; you try playing 4 competitive games in 10-11 days and see how it feels. All teams, except ManU & Spuds, lost points. The team gave it all, and u can be sure AW wanted it more than all of us.

  • alex

    Yeah yeah “one of those days ………

    Is that all you can say here ?

    Sorry if i differ from anyone else here but it is evident in that midfield we do not have a creative -penetrating passes -propper dribbler midfielder.I cannot understand why oh why we have to give chances after chances for useless players that they do not help in any form or shape the team.In all honesty more than the point we drop i am worried about what it will be the solution for teams that park the bus.Our two flnks are very weaK in my opinion given that Gervinho will be missed .
    I pray for Jack to come soon.Other than that i will be lying here if i will mention one player that i can rest my faith to.
    I expect some may criticize me on saying you said nothing during our unbeaten run but that run more than individualls skill it was a team spirit that made the differnce.Having saying that is not to underestimate Van Persie individual performance.I think sometimes when the media is continuously bombarding Arsenal with negativity i dont even bother to read theyr opinion but in reflecting wisely i have to aggree there is an element of truth on what they say in regard owr striking force and the team.
    Hope i am wrong but the flanks and that killer midfielder is badly missed.

  • Alex – I agree with you. While I feel Gervinho is an improvement on Nasri in terms of penetration and goal threat, we are certainly weaker in central midfield. Effectively, Cesc has been replaced by Ramsey/Rosicky, and clearly both are inferior players. We’ve also lost out in terms of Wilshere’s absence.

    As ever, the team have to adapt and improve. As Ramsey develops, we will see if he can grow into a replacement for Cesc. Maybe he won’t quite have that level of passing ever (cesc was outstanding in that respect) but Aaron is not injury prone and works much harder. As he develops, I expect these attributes will prove their worth for the team defensively, and we’ll end up better off as a team.

  • Mandy Dodd

    I think Aaron will end up one of the top MFs in Europe, he just needs time. If we do go for the buying option, I think Gourcuff could be good for us, but doubt if a player of that calibre will be available in Jan.
    On the subject of MFs, any more news on Diaby? Thought he was only going to be out for 10 days or so, that seemed like quite a while ago?

  • nicky

    My support goes back to the mid 1930’s and NO! you are not wrong. Arsenal and bizarre results go together as indivisible
    partners. Throughout the Club’s history, triumph and disaster have marched together in equal measure, certain victory being turned into defeat and vice versa.
    Championship titles, over the past 70 years, have never been retained.
    The result is that true Gooners have learnt to accept the unacceptable, in sure knowledge that whilst our horizon will be bright from time to time, the unexpected will always strike when least expected. Most sports can be humbling on occasion and football is no exception.
    Whatever the future holds for our great Club, one thing is certain. Arsenal will never be out of the news, world-wide.
    Pundits, referees, critics and fairweather fans may come and go
    but the Club will never die while loyal support remains.

  • Damien Luu

    @Mandy Dodd: Sorry, no Gourcuff, at least for now, AW said that already. I really worry about Diaby now, am afraid that he will never reach the highest level of his potential due to injuries.

    @Eatid: AW said Ryo and The Ox will have more games in the 2012, not the last game. Ryo has just come back from injury, and because of the importance of the game, AW chose the experience of Benayoun, which was right to me. We DID good, it’s just their keeper was TOO GREAT on the day.

    @People who whined about Cesc and Na$ri: AW DID NOT want to sell them. He DID everything he could to retain them. Cesc wants to play for his hometown club, couldn’t blame him for that. (He did say that he just wants to play for Arsenal and Barca, no other clubs, didn’t he?) Na$ri, well, just wants the $, and I like Gervinho much more than him, anyway. I also like the current team more than the team with Cesc as captain, and I know this team will be much stronger in the next seasons.

  • RedGooner

    I think all the arguments on who we didnt bring on etc are wrong. We lost because of one poor piece of defending.

    Walter said.
    While we fell asleep Wolves got a corner and when the ball was headed away, the second ball came to a Wolves player on the edge of the penalty area who took a shot that got deflected of the onrushing defenders and fell on the head of Fletcher who to his surprise saw the ball ending up in the back of the Arsenal goal.

    The problem was they werent onrushing the defence. Song stood there like a plank and played on Fletcher.
    If they all had come on rushing when they were supposed to we would have won 1-0.

    Its not a huge complaint as we are short of defenders in natural positions and it shows there is still work to do on the defensive side of our game mainly with the midfielders with defending set pieces.

    Win the next 2 games and it will be a different picture.

  • I’m surprised Desigunner thought Mertesacker was to blame for the goal, whereas Song was strolling out leisurel thereby playing Fletcher on.

    Walter,’ Why Always Us’? I mean with these incompetent referees. It’s actually frustrating.

  • ragnethan

    @Redgooner: your comment about Song is spot on, he kind of thinks he’s better than what he is which leads to him somehow thinking the game is a stroll in the park, unless he just isn’t bright enough to realise the importance of the game as a whole. it’s such a basic error.

  • Mahdain

    i have to agree with mandy here…make no mistake about it we miss our natural fullbacks big time..its not that djourou and vermy have been bad infact i think they have done pretty well defensively but its just that they are not comfortable as they would be in the middle and are afraid of getting caught out and hence we dont see those overlapping runs…santos for all the criticism he got and being told he cant defend is very good going forward and gives us an extra edge in attack that we missed a lot yesterday and that goes to sagna too…why oh why did all of our fullbacks had to get injured? its like a curse 🙁

  • Mahdain

    and then there are the referees… they are hell bent in making sure we dont get top 4 and with atkinson and probert next i dont think we will get any favours from them either..they all have history vs us

  • Asif

    I have a feeling that this season looks ominous for us…for the following reasons:

    1. We lost to Utd a few days before the transfer window closed, we got in a few players and they are all doing well and will stick around. Gervinho is better than Nasri, Fabregas was good but then I think his leaving has helped our cause…it actually has. Now our midfield has various options and not everything has to be chanelled through a single player
    2. The Wolves game was a wake up call. It happened at a very crucial time and as professionals you learn that you can’t take your foot of the gas even for a sec
    3. JW and AD will be back shortly. We have already lost enough games at the beginning of the season and hence we will not lose anymore
    Cheers!!! We drew the game, it was disappointing but we did not lose it….remember last season.

  • Nicky,
    Oh, I didn’t know that, though I have learnt a bit of history here and there in the past five years as a supporter.
    Take this game against Wolves. They had just one shot on target and that was a goal and one point for them. This seems to happen a lot.
    This season, at least, the team cannot be faulted on any aspect. Yet these accidents keep on happening, given that they are accidents, which is what strikes me as too much. Only one mistake we make and we pay heavily for it.
    Arsene and the players don’t deserve such bad luck.

  • ready

    Problem with AFC I see today in terms of winning trophies is that we’ve stagnated in these last six years. The only way we’ll ever win any sort of trophy is by adding to the squad, now there is the argument that we have too many players, well if need being we need a clear up. It’s been said time and time again but Rosicky and Diaby need to go, plenty of chances we’ve given them and they never step up- all they’re good for is getting injured. Benayoun is going back to his parent club as well so we get three midfielders and spend good money on them, not some cheap alternatives. Of course, I’m living in a fantasy land so I think I’ll just accept the truth that for the next few years to come we won’t be winning any trophies…at least AFC could do is lower the ticket prices then