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April 2021

Hey I’ve got to write about Arsenal. Quick, what’s the crisis?

By Tony Attwood

Another day another crisis.

“Arsene Wenger’s gamble” it is called.  Mathieu Debuchy out for a couple of months, and OMG that’s it, its all over.

So who exactly do we have who can play in defence now the irreplaceable Mr D has gone?

Calum Chambers can play right back

Hector Bellerin can play right back

Oh, ok, right, so no not such a crisis after all.   But wait, yes we can still have a crisis because there is a “knock on effect” at centre back.

Right, so who do we have at centre back…

Calum Chambers played at centre back at the start of the season and did rather well as I recall.

Per Mertesacker, plays there, and could play right back too.  And didn’t he win a cup or something in the summer?  And he don’t play internationals any more.

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Nacho Monreal can play in the centre also

Koscielny, who still wants his own song, is, I seem to recall, a centre back.

Bellerin can play centre back.

Flamini played full back for us before.

And there’s that Gibbs chap – he is, oh what is he, oh yes, a full back.

Isaac Hayden played in the league cup last season in the centre of defence.   “Ah but he’s just a reserve” scream those desperate to maintain the crisis image.  To which the only reply is, ok, what is the point of having an under 21 team if you are never going to promote any of them into the first team when needed?

And if you really want to go further there is Semi Ajayi and Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill, who is a left back.

Of course I am not saying we could play all the youngsters but I still put the point forwards – if we are never going to use our quality youth talent, what is the point of having them?

And hasn’t Coquelin played in the back line on occasion?

So, we need four players across the back, and our choice is

  • Calum Chambers
  • Per Mertesacker
  • Nacho Monreal
  • Laurent Koscielny, who wants his own song
  • Hector Bellerin
  • Matt Flamini
  • Gibbs
  • Isaac Hayden
  • Semi Ajayi
  • Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill

So with one player down we have ten without considering Coquelin.  Yes some are youngsters, and you might not want more than one at a time, but even without the last three on the list we have seven players who are known and can clearly play (and yes I’m including Bellerin in this.  If you ain’t seen him, you are in for a treat.)

So, let’s do that crisis thing one more time.

Mathieu Debuchy out for a couple of months, and OMG that’s it, its all over.

Or maybe not.

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60 comments to Hey I’ve got to write about Arsenal. Quick, what’s the crisis?

  • HighburyJD

    agree with most of this but never heard of Bellerin playing CB…?

  • ZOON

    Anybody who actually believes we are not slightly short in defence must be pushing there own agenda forward.

    Even Wenger said he needed to sign a CB after selling Vermaelen. Not a crisis yet but we did need another CB.

  • Ayotunde is an official AAA site. So many ozil , Wenger Ąπ∂ never satisfied arsenal fans are there. If you give a positive comment you are given a thumbdown.

    I sometimes feel ashamed because of our fans .

    From Nigeria

  • Robl

    @ Zoon,

    Granted, but what sort of quality are you going to get as a 4th choice centre back? Another Stepanovs or Cygan, or perish the thought, Silvestre? I think I’d rather give a promising youth player a chance than someone willing and capable of being 4th choice, but it’s all a matter of personal choice.

  • Ben

    Hahaha.honestly,dats ur defense.The basic thing is to have two first team players for every position. Do arsenal have that right now defensively, u and I know that the answer is no.u should have brought up this argument when we sighed sanchez, debuchy and the rest,cos am sure we have feeder team players who play in the same positions as the aforementioned players.if u resort to converting players to positions that is no there preferred one or promoting feeder team players because of the loss of one defender,that sounds like crisis to me.will any of the teams we are competing for titles with resort to such measures u suggested if they lose on defender, No.

  • finsbury

    The AAA have been attempting to ram the “Arsenal can’t play big teams” meme down peoples throats.

    I enjoyed the weak attempts by the AAA author to try and defend his groaning gibberish as exposed below:

  • finsbury

    Big teams as in teams that have a higher average height.

    The Özil “left wing” heat map was also mildly entertaining:

    Crickey. Vengarrgggghhh has lost it. Again.

    What has happened to my beloved Arsenal. Buying in footballers like Sanchez for half the cost of their peers! What is going on?

  • Ben

    @ Robi
    ur getting it all wrong,having 4 center backs dosent mean u have a fourth choice. It means u have two second choices, one 4 each center back position. Just like having 4 full back dosent make any of them a fourth choice

  • Mandy Dodd

    guess we could end up a bit short of experience, if not actually numbers at the back, but there is one good way to get experience. Will be good to see how Callum, and anyone else who get called in do.
    We dont know if Wenger may have tried to bring someone in, if he is genuinely happy with who we have…or if he has maybe taken a gamble, hoping for once, we would not have desperate luck with injuries…so much for that option!
    Also think the likes of Monreal may have been banging on the door demanding a bit more game time, especially after losing his place in the Spanish team…he may get his chance under current circumstances especially with his versatility.

  • finsbury

    Hayden played against Gazprom-upon-Fulham last seasoning he diddly cup game. Played ok. In the popular position of D**M. Could’ve been sent off during that game, surely that qualifies him for the role by the understanding of your average out of date know-nothing footy hack?* I’d keep him on the list.

    At least Hayden has already had more of an opportunity playing football for Arsenal then Josh McEchearan ever received under the odourless cloud of the Oligarchy.

    *MartinLipton praising old skool attributes on a podcast minutes after the ex-pro and manager John Gregory had said that Arteta has been the most impressive current player inhis eyes was too funny for school. You couldn’t make this stuff up! The strong impression left when you compare the hack with the pro is that Lipton and pals and their despardo AAA hangers on haven’t got a clue. In their own words, not mine!

  • finsbury

    John Gregory, who also comes from Tottenham supporting family was happy to say that:

    “Arsenal represent the best in English Football” (as representatives at the top of the Game).

    So the Tottenham fan can see it, happy to say it public. And he’s not the only one to have done so,
    A shame that the AAA choose to ignore and denigrate their own club. For some reason.

    I blame autocorrect for mangling my comment above. Sorry! Back to work…

  • Ben

    refusing to see anything wrong in all things arsenal is worse than refusing to see any good in everything arsenal.I don’t think we are in crisis right now defensively, but we will be wit just one more injury in that area.which is bad 4 a club of arsenals caliber

  • finsbury

    Corr.: “most impressive current Arsenal player”

  • Mandy Dodd

    If JG supports Spurs, he would not be the first Spurs fan to appreciate AFC and Wenger more than some of our own

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    If Bellerin continues to improve as he has done so far, he is likely to be our first choice starter there in another year or so. He should be elevated now and start whenever we play suitable opponents. Remember he’s the fastest sprinter at the club over 40 yards. He needs to work on defensive positioning yet but will only improve further against senior opposition and by playing with first team players. Absolutely no crisis in the Right back position.

  • nicky

    You ask, Finsbury, what is going on….Well, I’ll tell you.
    No sooner than a new season begins and a transfer window closes, out come those supporters of a fickle nature (and they are legion) complaining that we should have bought so-and-so and wailing that our injury list is beginning to lengthen.
    We have new signings trying to bond, reserves banging on the first team door, players recovering from World Cup action and only 4 games played in the EPL.
    Yet doom and gloom are already about and some folk simply cannot wait until the January transfer window opens.
    On the plus side,we remain among the few clubs unbeaten since last Spring, we are in Europe and we now have an attack that is the envy of most clubs in the land. Goals will come in abundance once the whole team starts to gel and every player acts on the same wavelength and becomes aware of the movement and intent of every one of his colleagues on the field. But this takes time and those supporters who are impatient for immediate success must realise that “Rome wasn’t built in a day”.
    Supreme optimism and patience is an obvious pre-requisite for our undoubted prosperity this season. See to it… 😉

  • finsbury

    Not sure about the supreme optimism Nicky!

    Tomorrow will be another super tough highly demanding technically mind blowing game of football. I can’t wait to see what happens. I think Arsenal will miss the big target man* who played so well in the fixture last year, but let’s see how Dortmund cope with the alternatives that the Arsenal have available in their, well, their Arsenal!

    *Plans A, C, etc…the tall CF aka “The Lump” has always been plan B in my eyes, since the days of the RVP, Ade & Eduardo triumvirate. Whisper it, but someone, somewhere, might, just might, have a plan. Who’d have thunk it!

  • Mike T


    Hayden didn’t play against Chelsea in the league cup last season so its a bit strange to say the least that you say he had a good game!

    To date Hayden has played just once for Arsenal as opposed to the 11 games Josh McEchearan has played for Chelsea

  • finsbury

    Don’t worry Mike T. It was the West Brum game he played in, the round before. And he still played well. And he was still lucky to get that yellow!

    To be fair, I was trying to be kind comparing Josh’s minutest with Isaac. I guess such kindness was as error. It was the Chelsea fans were telling us he was going to be better or as good as Wilshere. And I think Jack has played more the eleven games for Arsenal, don’t you?

    And to be fair, three years ago he looked like he had some potential. Shame he hasn’t played, as I’m sure you are aware players in that age group, if fit they need to play.

  • finsbury

    I sure am glad the parents of players like Chamberlain and Ramsey and the rest knew that their children would be given a fair go at AFC.

    It is what it is.

  • jambug

    Mike T

    Wearing your brand new ‘Match Assessors’ hat, what did you make of the ‘rotational’ fouling by city.



    Fernandinhos off the ball foul on Welbeck right under Clattenburgs nose?


    Flamini booked for 1st foul?

  • ZOON

    I think City did make a lot of fouls and got away with most of them. But they also didn’t get a stonewall penalty and our first goal could have been given as a foul on Aguero so dont think we did bad on the descisions as a whole.

  • Mike T


    As a 17 year old Josh looked to have it all but his development stalled . I think that`s down to the fact that he hasn’t bulked up . He can pick a pass there is no doubt but he hasn’t pushed on in the last two or three years.
    He had everything going for him and may well go on to better things but I doubt it.
    Every Chelsea supporter is willing our youth players to push on and without doubt there are some very talented youngsters at our club and I suspect we will see a couple play against Bolton next week one I would keep an eye on is Boga.


    Other that MOTD highlights I didn’t watch your game as I was on my way to ours v Swansea I only listened to the first half commentary on 5L.
    The radio commentary made reference to the approach and Steve Claridge was far from complimentary about the ref suggesting that the fouls weren’t, if taking in isolation bookings, but the suggestion was it was part of Man City’s game plan.

    I was interesting to see what Man City supporters take on the game and they to a man seem to think they were cheated out of the win.

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    What ever might be the case with our defending options, we can see that we are not short of any defensive cover right now. Sorry for Debuchy picking up that injury. I wish him a strong recovery. Two players are now being floated for that right back defending. And we have two right backs in the persons of Chambers and Bellerin that will be available for selection as we well know. So, there aren’t any shortages in our back line. And our forwards are looking pretty promisingly prolific, while our midfielders are still a bit above average. But Jack Wilshere have now take it up upon himself to sort any weakness in there. But can a tree make a forest? I think Ozil must compensate us over his failings with a high telling performance that will ruin Dortmound tomorrow. I believe Arsenal will win this game again. To enhance our victory, the Gunners should please be well defensively organised to avoid been caught out by Dortmound on the counter or on the attacking furry. Our strikers or any Gunners that have a chance to score, should bury it at the very first time of asking. No misses! I repeat, no misses!! Should our Big midfielder be failing in performance, the boss should not feel shy to sub him in time. Time sufficient for the substitute to make an impact on our game. If I may be permitted by the boss to mention a name, does Campbell have any problem with his football? If not, why has the boss been keeping him idle? Ox can be prolific in playing, but he hardly scored. He misses often or hit the woodwork. We don’t need any entertainment plays but the goals that will sink Dortmound. I think Campbell had played at this level before and scored. Sorry, I am not an advocate of Campbell, but of Arsenal.

  • jambug

    Mike T

    Thanks for that.

    I’ve no doubt they do.

    Personally I think it was a fair result on balance.

    There penalty ‘shout’ was a ‘shout’ and no more. In the I’ve seen them given category, although not for us obviously 🙂

    The 2 incidents they are moaning about in the build up to our goals where nothing compared to the stuff they where getting away with. If the ref was applying the rules THAT strictly they would of been down to 9 men so where they get they where robbed I don’t know.

    You must be pleased with your boys.

  • finsbury

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts in Josh. Even though he has not been given the minutes that he needs he may still be a late(er) bloomer.

    I’d disagree on bulk being a major problem, Koscielny came over, needed to add on a tiny bit and he did, after about a season and a half it was noticeable. Ditto for Pires, and so many others. Özil is bulking up as he adapts to the PL at this very moment, but that stopped him being a key player for Germany and winning the World Cup.

    In my humble and ignorant opinion he’d have been a more useful and productive player for Gazprom last season then Lampard, especially after Mata was sold. That’s not to dismiss the senior player’s experience or value, but follwing on from that first fourty five on Saturday I think most would agree that it’s a fair and reasonable consideration.

  • finsbury

    Corr.: but that did not stop him being a key player for Germany playing in every game on the way to winning the World Cup

  • Steve Vallins

    Milners early tackle on Debuchy in the first half down by the corner flag was late and nasty he knew exactly what he was doing.Clatternberg pointed for a goalkick and the look on Milners face said it all he could not believe he got away without a booking and i think from that point we all know Milner and Clattenberg have set the standard for unbookable tackles during the game


    Mike T. The only player that comes to mind that your club developed and played regularly for your lot in the last 15 or 20 so years is John Terry. You guys don’t even try to give youth a chance, Your scumbag Russian gangster owner spends his stolen money on proven players and doesn’t even seem to care about your youth academy. To each his own I guess. I have no agenda against you personally, You seem to be an intelligent and decent person. It is your fucking scumbag owner who stole his country’s natural resources, And who started buying players like canned goods at the supermarket. Which in my opinion really exacerbated the financial mess which permeates the sport today. He is the motherfucker that I don’t care for.

  • El Gringo

    Regarding the “stonewall penalty” nonsense, it would have been a travesty to award it. That was a textbook case of ball-to-hand. Wilshere’s hand was glued to his side in a natural position, and the ball knocked off him from a distance of less than a meter. “Handball” is a misnomer, since the penalty is for playing the ball, not touching it.

    I was amused to see Kompany handle the ball with an extended arm, which he then waved in protest at Wilshere. Oh the irony.

  • hrishi

    Hayden played the west brom game in central midfield. It was the Verm-Per combination in defence. That said, Hayden still seems to be a decent backup option. Nevertheless, a slightly more experienced CB would not have gone amiss.

  • Sean

    I couldn’t believe how inept Wenger’s management of the game proved to be after we scored what should have been the winner. It was evident right after we scored the second goal that Man City were pushing forward to get the equaliser. Our players were having difficulty to gain possession of the ball and thus gain valuable time. Ozil was having another average game and was beginning to tire. Given these circumstances that were so obvious to everyone watching the game Mr Wenger did not make any substitutions until he was forced to.Remember the goal was scored on 74! The first sub was Chambers for Debuchy on 81!!!!!! 7 minutes after the goal.The second sub was The Ox for Welbeck on….89!!!! 4 minutes ATER their equaliser (not before as it should have been)And the third was Arteta for Flamini on…..90!!!! What he should have done much much earlier was to take out Ozil who can’t defend for his life and who was tiring and either put Arteta on to bolster the defensive line in front of the defence or if he is loath to change the balance of the team put The Ox on. The Ox would have run them rugged on the flank keeping their defenders pinned back and he is not bad at defending either.What an earth Ozil was doing on the pitch when the referee blew the final whistle is beyond me.Wenger should have INTERVENED. He should have managed the game. He should have helped his players manage the game….I am sorry but he didn’t.

  • para

    When i see the individual brilliance in our players, i can imagine a day when they ALL perform so good that it would be hard to crown a man of the match.

    It will not be long now.

    It will be good to see other players given a chance now. I think AW will know when and where to play them, depending on their current fitness, availability and sharpness in training/matches.

    Hope to see Joel on Tues.

  • para

    Steve Vallins
    “Milners early tackle on Debuchy in the first half down by the corner flag was late and nasty he knew exactly what he was doing.”

    I wonder if this could have somehow cause the injury in a delayed reaction. He might have not felt any pain at the injury, but later as it sometimes happens.

    I think ALL contact of player to player should some how be punished so as to promote more skill from players.

  • apo Armani

    @Steve Vallins,

    Bang on mate…thats exactly my take on it!!!

  • Josif

    “I’m happy with the signings but we still need a physical presence with prodigious ability like Vieira or Petit.”

    Two questions:

    1.can Mr Attwood answer – without using Google – which notorious AAA has revived the story about our need for a physical defensive midfielder, mocked many, many, many, many times here, with a statement above and

    2.are jokes about a DM-beast now off?

  • nicky

    The last paragraph of your 7.40 made more sense than I have read or heard for a very long time.
    It won’t happen but I wish it would.
    (Just imagine though, the skills that would emerge, globally, by the absence of contact).

  • Mike T

    @ Jambug

    We aren’t quite there yet in that we are going to score a hat full of goals but we need to be a bit more savvy in our defensive set up when pushing forward. I suspect for certain games Jose will push Cesc just behind the front man and drop Oscar with possibly Mikel playing alongside Matic.

    @ Finsbury

    Keeping Lampard for another season was a sentimental decision. Josh wasn’t the option he really isn’t up to it, unfortunately!


    Over the years Chelsea have produced a significant number of players. The production line came to a grinding halt when Bates was chairman. Having said that there are quite a few players that didn’t quite make the grade at Chelsea but play elsewhere.

    Southampton aside at this point in time very few of the PL clubs are currently producing top players. I know their academy manager Matt Hale quite well. They do have a distinct advantage in that their catchment area extends well in to the West Country with little competition from other cat 1 academy’s.

  • AL

    What an accurate description of the oligarchy lol.

    I don’t see what the big fuss is all about; you can replace Vermalean with Chambers, Sagna with Debuchy, so we’re exactly where we were last season. The media would have people believe we sold all four first choice defenders and didn’t bring anyone in, the way they sound.

  • Mick

    I read that Chambers is a doubt, he has tonsillitis. I am actually looking forward to Bellerin playing to see how he shapes up, so no crisis as far as I am concerned.
    Our pal and biggest fan David Hytner from the Guardian is critical of Arsenes transfer strategy though, well there’s a surprise…

  • bjtgooner


    Agree with your comments re the Chelski owner. In addition I don’t think too much of “The Pouting One” – a nasty two faced short arsed git!

  • Don’t be so ridiculous.Monreal is not a centre back in any shape or form,Flamini is not a lb.Germany DROPPED Mertesacker in the World cup because he is too slow and Kos has a long term achilles problem which means he can’t train after a game. So you don’t think that having 6 players for 4 positions and 19 for 6 is really poor squad management ? Wenger gambled yet again and it has backfired.I can’t wait to see Monreal and Haydn against Diego Costa, or Flamini against dimaria, how amusing.

  • ARSENAL 13

    Yesterday watched ESPN. Football today.

    Now therz no talk of DM. Instead, how stubborn Mr Wenger is and how he doesn’t allow Steve Bould to do the defensive training….
    Oh and add to that, how zonal marking is to be blamed.

    And he started his argument with ‘I am not an ARSENAL fan, but it angers me to see them like this. I played against the invincibles and I know how tough they were.’

    Does that(him playing against the invincibles) justify his ignorant rant???….

  • Brickfields Gunners

    The guys were all at a deer camp. No one wanted to room with Bob, because he snored so badly. They decided it wasn’t fair to make one of them stay with him the whole time, so they voted to take turns.
    The first guy slept with Bob and comes to breakfast the next morning with his hair a mess and his eyes all bloodshot. They said, ‘Man, what happened to you?

    He said, ” Bob snored so loudly, I just sat up and watched him all night.”

    The next night it was a different guy’s turn. In the morning, same thing – hair all standing up, eyes all bloodshot. They said, “Man, what happened to you? You look awful!”

    He said, ” Man, that Bob shakes the roof with his snoring. I watched him all night .”

    The third night was Pete’s turn. Pete was a big burly ex-Navy man; a man’s man. The next morning he came to breakfast bright eyed and bushy tailed. ” Good morning,” he said.

    They couldn’t believe it! They said, ” Man, what happened?”

    He said, “Well, we got ready for bed. I went and tucked Bob into bed, patted him on the butt, and kissed him good night. Bob sat up and watched me all night…”

  • Josif, no I can’t. I don’t go searching AAA commentaries – I just report the oddest ones that I find.

  • Nelson Wong

    Its not crisis yet. Its a thin back that’s getting thinner.

    I think Wenger believes Bellerin is ready to take at least the smaller games or he would have retained Jekinson. I would not buy into that yet until he make one or two good games but he is there.

    I would say 5 players for 4 positions with probably one more.

    Ohter lads might come up ok too but putting too many young and inexperienced player together would be a real problem. Having one is one thing. Two or three would be a problem although they might be good individually.

  • colario

    Brickfields Gunners
    September 16, 2014 at 6:22 am

    Too late for me!!!

    When I was much younger I shared a room for a few days with someone who snored and snored.

    Now you tell me what to do. Good one! Just wished I’d thought of it at the time.

  • finsbury

    Mike T

    “Needs to bulk up”
    “really isn’t up to it,”

    Not sure what to make of the above. Perhaps if you’d seen more of te player your thoughts about him might be more consistent 🙂

    Young players, especially when they’ve had injury setbacks they need to play. Fair to say that’s not a great secret of the game, or any other sport: as Afobe is proving at MK, he’s rehabilitating his career after serious injury, a few years ago he was being scouted by Bunga Bunga Barcelona. I suppose such things are not a consideration for those lucky lucky fans of a neo-feudalistic oligarchical model:

    “@matthewsyed The ‘quality’ of the bile & thuggery that you’re getting from CFC fans as a result of your article vindicates what you wrote.”

  • finsbury

    “Tottenham Hotspur and the Takeover Panel have confirmed the club is in an official bidding period with Cain Hoy. The Takeover Panel, the independent supervisory body, posted Cain Hoy’s interest in buying Spurs on its official disclosure table on Monday.”

    Well. There’s a shock and a surprise. No one saw that coming!
    Least of all Untold Arsenal.

  • finsbury

    “A source involved in US investment in the Premier League told the Telegraph: “Tottenham are not Arsenal, but they are in the same zip code. With the new stadium you would have a shot of spending the kind of money it would take to challenge the big boys.”

    “the same zip code”
    A “source” keen on selling the club!
    Comedy gold.

  • Mike T


    Why is it inconsistent to say that he needs to bulk up and that he isn’t up to it? He is to frail and is easily knocked off the ball.

    Afobe isn’t really a good example of what I think you are trying to say.

    Yes he had an injury in 2013 and following return to full fitness went on loan to Sheffield Wednesday.
    Yes he is now at MK Dons but to date he hasn’t played one competitive game at Arsenal and has like Josh been shipped out on at every opportunity indeed MK dons is the 6th different club he has been sent out on loan to.

    The end of the 2014/2015 will see the end of his Arsenal contract and also is how long he is on loan till and I very very much doubt he will be awarded a new contract at Arsenal.

  • finsbury

    Haha! This is funny. Thank you Mike T!

    Afobe was given as a reference because he is the perfect example of why it is foolish to write off a young player.

    He’s come back from injuries that looked like they had ended his career, thy he’d been Frimponged. This time last year it was almost all over for him. I guess he must have “bulked up”.

  • finsbury

    I suppose the vagaries and ravages of injury upon a players career are not a consideration for fans of a club that relegate Malouda etc. to play with the reserves. Hence the inability to understand that Afobe has done very well to get back to playing so well at that level. A new contract at AFC is not the priority, getting through the season without serious setback and going on to have a career (are rebuilding his fitness) is the priority. It’s not rocket science, just anatomy (e.g: Wilshere).

    The game between Gazprom-upon-Fulham and Gazprom-auf-Rhine is coming up for those lucky lucky fans of the oligarchs.

  • Mike T

    @ Finsbury

    Afobe of course has done well to come back from injury but he is at MK Dons to see out his contract he will not make it at Arsenal. Prior to his injury he had already been shipped out on loan 4 times. The signs were there prior to his injury that he wasn’t going to make it at Arsenal.
    Any player returning from long term injury struggles and at PL level are given high levels of support. Many still do not perform to the pre injury levels.

    Moulda is an interesting one similar in some ways to RVP. Moulda requested a transfer which was granted. Chelsea agreed fees etc with several clubs yet Moulda turned them all down. He in effect wanted his contract paid up which Chelsea refused.
    Love your comical references to Gazprom. Oh how I laughed!
    Its just so strange that you don’t seem to realise or perhaps acknowledge that Arsenal have benefited from Gazproms money and indeed the companies branding is shown at the Emeriates

  • finsbury

    You’re on a roll today Mike. Looks like this season that Jon Toral will beat the fourteen Championship games that Chelsea were able to secure over the last two seasons for Josh, looks like the Arsenal boy might get a fair crack! Who could have imagined such scenes.

    Thanks for reminding me of the role that corporate sponsorship plays in the modern game. Fortunately most football fans are aware of the conflict of interests caused by Gazprom in the game, this is why many Arsenal fans are happy Usmanov is off the board. But of course as a long term fan of Untold Arsenal you know all this.

    A decent effort at evasion above but unfortunately I don’t think AFC’s connections are at this level!:

    Unlike tomorrow’s game there is no obvious conflict of interest. You sure are one lucky sports fan! Enjoy.

  • InitialsBB

    Totally agree that youth should be promoted and given a chance if deemed to be ready. How else would we have seen players like O Leary, Brady, Adams, Davis, Merse, Rocky, Mickey Thomas, Parlour, Cashley as well as Gibbs and Wilshere. Arsene Wenger as custodian must decide if and when they have the quality and mentality to make their debuts, keeping in mind that to play any of these lads too early could potentially ruin their careers.

    Regarding your list of options, I have watched a lot of the youths and reserves over the last few seasons and Bellerin and perhaps Hayden are the only players even close. Semi Ajayi and Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill are nowhere near ready, Ajayi being miles off. I would loathe to see Monreal or Flamini start at CB and would prefer to see local lad and Brit Issac Hayden take the opportunity if given it. Growing up local he knows what Arsenal means to us here.

  • finsbury


    I’m very much looking forward to seeing how Hayden, Bellerin and Akpom get on this season. On top of that Chambers too.Almost looking forward to the Southampton game more then tonight’s.
    The same people who told me Gnabry had the tools (injury robbed the Gnipper an outside chance of making ze German squad) have been impressed by the above, that’s good enough for me.

  • jambug

    ARSENAL 13

    …Oh and add to that, how zonal marking is to be blamed.

    The same Zonal marking that conceded the least set piece goals of anyone last year.

    I don’t know what it is with these pundits and ‘zonal’ marking. Whenever a team using it concedes they start. When teams using ‘man to man’ marking concede it never gets a mention.

    I know what you mean, these fools drive me crazy.

  • jambug

    Also, we’ve won the last 2 domestic trophies up for grabs and are unbeaten in a competitive games since Everton away.

    We have just played the champions in a fantastic game that we could easily of won.

    City Lost at home before playing us.

    Liverpool anyone?

    United have had the start from hell but hay, they’ve beat QPR at home so all’s well.

    Chelsea? We’ll they haven’t played anyone yet have they? Isn’t that what they said about us last year at this sort of time?

    And yet. AND YET as usual it’s ARSENAL getting all the shit, and not just from the media but from our own idiotic fans.

    No, Arsenal are not perfect. Wenger is not perfect. The team is not but perfect.

    But honestly, some of these people. WHAT THE FUCK DO THEY WANT.