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April 2021

Arsenal – Galatatarata* **: The 75 minute report

By Walter Broeckx

With my training finished just 15 minutes before kick off, a quick shower, a drive home on the speed limits (never crossed them as far as I know) I came in with the match just a few minutes under way. Oh damned I forgot to leave my computer on so I had to restart it and before I got the stream running the match was around the 15 minute mark. A good omen as that was where I could start to see the youth match this afternoon. And they won 5-1.

So I will leave the first 15 minutes out of this but from the moment I was watching it was Arsenal that was producing a Gala-match. Against Galatasaray. Oh well it sounded funnier when I first had it in my head.

Arsenal on top and we carved them open when we wanted. A few misplaced passes disrupted a few promising attacks. But it all came well when Alexis cut inside from the left flank and played an inch perfect pass to Welbeck who put it in the goal between the keepers legs. 1-0 to the Arsenal.

If we hadn’t been on top before well not we were al over them. And some 8 minutes later a long ball was headed by a defender and right in to the path of Welbeck who slotted home his second of the evening. 2-0 to the Arsenal. And we were in complete control.

Time for the ref to show that there is a certain rule in the laws of the game that is telling that no player should be send off who plays against Arsenal. That two footed tackle on Alexis was a red card. Two feet, studs showing, front tackle….a leg breaker. Maybe he has been a good friend with this ref in his time in Italy but come on ref this really was disappointing.  This had all for a red card in the laws of the game. Later the ref seemed to remember the laws a bit better, but then it was against an Arsenal player of course.

After a scare Alexis could play further and took his revenge when in minute 41 he got an inch perfect pass from Özil (I think it was) and he also put the ball in the corner. 3-0 to the Arsenal at half time.

In between the fans from Galatatataratata* showed the lack of class by lighting up flares and throwing them on the pitch. I hope Uefa punishes hem and make hem play the rest of their games without supporters. THAT would be appropriate to learn those fools who did this.

We started nice and easy in the second half. No need to run forward like idiots any more. But after a few minutes we got back under steam and The Ox ran past all and every player from Galata-andsoon* but in stead of shooting he cut it back but a defender could clear it.

A few minutes later The Ox was more lucky with his assist ans Welbeck clipped it nicely over the keeper to make it 4-0.

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8 minutes later the ref found his laws of the game book again when Szczesny came out in an attempt to stop a through ball and the striker could not but go down. Suddenly the laws were interpreted as strict as can be: penalty and a red card. No problem if only the ref would apply the laws in the same way for both teams.  But well we are Arsenal and we are used to such things. But that doesn’t make it right.

Ospina came on completely cold and couldn’t stop the penalty. But after that he showed what an amazing keeper he is. At least 2 of not 3 excellent stops and one was really amazing when he clawed a header out of the goal that looked unstoppable. A great performance from our back up keeper!

We tried to just defend the lead after that but still managed to create a few chances on the counter. But the biggest part of the team leaned back in order to keep Galatasathing* from scoring.  The biggest threat came when the otherwise excellent Cazorla playing from a deeper role this match (playing out of position – let us start the outrage) lost the ball in a dangerous position but it lead to nothing.

Talking about the laws of the game and Cazorla. At the end of the match on an Arsenal counter Cazorla clipped the ball over the keeper who came rushing towards him, Cazorla tried to jump over him while the ball went in the direction of the goal line. The keeper clearly impeded him, in the penalty area and if it hadn’t been for this Cazorla could have run the ball over the line himself. Now a defender could clear just before the line.

And suddenly the ref forgot the laws again. I didn’t see much difference with the penalty and red card against Arsenal. A forward plays the ball past the keeper who comes out and make sure the striker will not go further after the ball. Ok Cazorla didn’t fell over as being shot but it surely cannot be the way you fall over that decides if it is a foul or not. And a red card. But the ref had dropped his version of the laws of the game by then. It probably is still on the pitch.

A fantastic win and if the ref would have done his job in the first half and sent Melo off we surely would have won by a bigger margin. But well… this is how it goes with Arsenal.

* Galatasaray. You will have noticed I made a mess of their name. Maybe it is childish from me. But I really am very angry on the team, players and supporters.  The way they tried to kick Alexis off the pitch was a disgrace. And the way their fans disrupted the match was shameful. Instead of banning managers who make comments about the ref I hope that UEFA acts against Galatasaray. Throw them out or at least make them feel that such dangerous behaviour is no longer accepted in football. Throwing burning flares on the pitch is very dangerous. So I couldn’t bring myself to write their name properly as they have embarrassed themselves today. Both on and off the pitch.

** In my mother languages the “taratataaaa” is also used when you are singing in celebration on some old local song.  And well I must admit I am singing it now: “En van je hoempa hoempa hoempa tataraaaa tataraaa tataraaa….” 😉

*** Tell me is there any other site who comes up with such a thing….

82 comments to Arsenal – Galatatarata* **: The 75 minute report

  • WalterBroeckx

    The most important thing on the internet in the Flemish media is the not given red card against Melo. Unbelievable that he wasn’t send off is the verdict.

    come on guys welcome to our club

  • AL

    Great analysis Walter. I thought the ref was inconsistent too especially with the melo and Carzola incidents.

    And to those who accuse us of whining, we still complain when we win 10-0, if the ref doesn’t do a proper job. All we want is a ref doing his job properly, win or lose. It’s not sour grapes, you hear that? No mention of sour grapes again please.

  • bjtgooner

    Nice write up Walter and so soon after the final whistle!

    Re the Szczesny send off – the Galatatarata player touched the ball past Szczesney and probably away from the goal. Should the ball direction influence the red card v yellow card decision?

  • menace

    Not sure about the Szczesny red card but Melo has to get a red. The referee was very biased and robbed Arsenal of a fair game. UEFA must do something about flares and Gala must pay Arsenal a huge fine to repair the damage caused by flares.

    Welbeck was good but Alexis was superb. He played on in spite of the nasty tackles and unfair decisions.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Nice one Walter. The team did well….the ref…same shit, different day. Atkinson on sat. Maybe one day, the club will at least try and do something to get a level playing field. Maybe they already have done, but cannot see to any effect if they have.
    Sometimes, the ECL refs seem even worse than the north of England brigade. Maybe the euro refs masters have still not forgotten the events surrounding Marseilles disgrace….events that UEFA initially tried to keep quiet?

  • Mandy Dodd

    Sorry, it is actually Atkinson on Sunday. One more day to prepare for him!

  • I was already mad at the ref only for the idiots called English pundits to start blaming Szczesny (who they have always hated) for “lacking concentration”. The fuckers are being led by Paul Merson whose opinions on the game are no different from most I read on the Internet. Probably only worse.

  • AB

    Wellbeck Wellbeck Wellbeck enough said !

  • Josif

    If Nigel de Jong and Mark van Bommel had had a brother at WC 2010 to play next to them, it would have been Melo. He is a butcher.

    Welbeck’s second goal reminded me of Henry’s goals. Actually, three goals in the first half came from almost the same place. Had we played at Highbury tonight, I’d have said it was Henry’s spot. Superb hat-trick from a lad that seems to be the most polite lad out there. If I had a grandmother that uses public transport in London every day, I’d expect Welbeck to be the guy to give her his seat.

    Gibbs & Alexis down the left flank, Chambo & Chambo down the right flank, Mesut down the middle, Welbeck scoring them for fun… That’s how it should be. 🙂

    Walter, what can we expect in the games against Agents 006 from Bruxelles? 🙂

  • proudkev

    You do wonder that had that Melo tackle been committed by an Arsenal player would a red card have been given. I suspect the answer is yes, which scares me.

  • proudkev

    The only reason Shezney is being targeted is because it is the only negative of the game. This is typical of how arsenal are treated. I guarantee the Doomers will be doing the same thing, the positives do not help their agenda. So they ignore them. It will be all about Shezney.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Paul Merson was a good player…..but let’s face it, the guy is in no position to criticise anybody for perceived faults, errors or attitudes. Maybe he needs the money, as wrighty needs the attention, Stewart Robson feels a need to pay the club back,

  • AL

    Found this on a french website;

    “Felipe Melo had a choice at birth: either a career as a footballer, or don the butcher’s apron.
    After careful consideration, the Brazilian player chose the first option to the chagrin of his opponents, but it is clear that he can always revert once hung up his boots …”

    You were not far off with your estimation of him as a butcher.

    I think pundits are just trying to find the slightest excuse to attack our players. It’s getting ridiculous. Sczesney could not have done anything, and as bjt pointed out the attacking player had already lost the ball ( Carzola would still have reached the ball had he not been brought down, but that’s besides the point I’m trying to make). Ozil was subbed to a standing ovation(fans never lie), but listening to the pundits one could be excused to think both players had had a stinker. I know we, the sane fans can ignore them, but it’s fuel for the AAA. And it’s disgusting when it’s former Arsenal players leading the attacks. Though I must point out Martin Keown was nothing but full of praise for the team, and spoke highly of Danny. True legend.

  • AB

    Why so negative everyone we won for Gods sake !

  • Mandy Dodd

    Anyone else thinking we made some very good buys this summer!

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Two mega results today if anyone had said this morning that the aggregate score was going to be Arselal 9 Galatasaray 2 I would have doubted their sanity, yet it happened. A great team performance this afternoon from the U19s with five different goal scorers and a fantastic performance this evening from the seniors. The ref this afternoon was excellent the one this evening wasn’t. A privilege to be at both in person.

    UEFA should ban Galatasaray supporters from all away games and they should receive a heavy fine as well as a substantial bill from Arsenal to cover all damage to the ground and the extra cost of stewarding.

  • InitialsBB


    It was his second straight red in 5 CL games, did you expect them to ignore it?

  • Va Cong

    Disgrace of of officiating and well gala classless fans

  • InitialsBB

    Mandy Dodd- agreed, I think we made all excellent buys this summer, delighted with all of them. What a pleasant surprise Chambers has been

  • proudkev

    The boss has clearly been working with Welbeck, you could see the similarities in the runs Henry would make. He was a real bargain and LVG is looking a bit of an idiot for those awful comments he made. We have been unlucky with injuries but Theo is back soon and that gives us incredible pace and options. Things are definitely looking up.

  • proudkev

    Initials BB. No not ignore it just not make it out to be the main talking point of the game or use it to overshadow what was a very good performance. Mark my words more will be made of it than is necessary. Yet hardly a comment about that two footed assault that happened in the first half and was one of the clearest red cards you will ever see.

  • Pat

    Great performance by the team and great vocal support from the fans. All the players’ songs were sung. Also a new one, ‘Are you watching, are you watching, are you watching Manchester?’

    Go on Danny!

  • Mandy Dodd

    Yes, Chambers looks a bit special
    . Anyone else notice we seemed to be playing the ball infront of our forwards more…..if so, is this a confidence thing, some part of the teams evolution…..or did they just let us?

  • Pat

    I look forward to all those newspapers which battered on about our injuries as if they were all our own fault NOTICING that Alexis Sanchez only escaped a broken leg by great good luck and his attacker didn’t even get a red card. Come on, journos, draw a few conclusions why don’t you?

  • Damilare

    A good win and kudos to all our boys. Congrats to Welbeck on his CL hatrick (only 3rd after Henry and Bendtner).

    Stupid commentators tried to rubish our attacking threat with ‘Arsenal would have a lot of defending to do against Chelsea on Sunday’.

    Happy 18th Anniversary to AW

  • InitialsBB

    Wow. I didn’t realise it was the main talking point.

    As a gooner how could you let that overshadow a magnificent attcking performance.

  • Pete

    No comments yet from:

    Carim, Lance, dB10, Danish, Madeto…, Ash79, Andrew, Justheman, jonny, Jet and Iwant…

    What’s up?

  • Gord

    Arsenal and Galatasary are being reported to UEFA over the flares.

    I don’t see any evidence in the news media (Google News) of their being any bad refereeing. Mind you, all I am getting to see if the English only subset of media “appropriate” for a North American audience. Quite often these searches show articles in other languages, and I am not seeing them here. Which could be because referee is an English only word.

    That vanishing spray being used by the referees may be hazardous, and could be removed. It is apparently flammable, but I am wondering if this is the propellant, and not the foam? In any event, spraying lines on the pitch in the presence of flares, is probably not a good thing to do if something involved is flammable.

    Group A is tight, 3 points all around, +1, 0, 0, -1 GD.
    Group B, Real pulling away. Basel ahead on head to head over ‘pool?
    Group C, Benfica looks to be in trouble.
    Group D, Dortmund pulling away, points and GD. But, we’re started now.
    Group E, Bayern pulling away, and Roma getting a healthy GD. OilCity in trouble.
    Group F, too close to call, another +1, 0, 0, -1 group.
    Group G, another +1, 0, 0, -1 group, with Chelsea squeekily ahead
    Group H, BATE in trouble if they don’t win the correct games.

    Tidbit for the referees, courtesy of Daily Mail:
    > Female ref knocked unconscious during match in Argentina: Salome Di Lorio was hit square in the face from a free-kick during a recent game in Argentina.

  • Gord

    @Andrew Crawshaw

    Are we going to see a catering report, or anything like that, from your watching the U19s play? I think it is wonderful you got to see both Arsenal games!

  • Gord

    Where does one find good media articles about Arsenal? In another response in this thread, or the prepratory game thread, I mention Camden New Journal. Well, someone else on Untold had mentioned SBS, who I believe are from Australia. Here’s a link to their writeup on the game:

  • Mahdain

    About the flares thing i think Arsenal are partly to blame for this as they seem to not take it serious. Tony has written about this not once or twice but still it happened again. Clearly the stewards are not doing their jobs well enough to ensure these flares and smoke bombs arent sneaked in. Having said that, the Galatasaray fans behaviour was totally unacceptable and UEFA should take action against them

  • Gord

    Danny Welbeck tracks down Champion’s League hat-trick ball! It looks like the Ox was there to help him.

    Curious. Someone else on Untold commented on the purple uniform of Galatasary. Purple is not remotely close to opposite of red and white. But, did someone on Galatasary think that some players at Arsenal are colour blind?

  • Gord

    The media again.

    SBS produced a summary of the UEFA Champions League, leading with stuff about Arsenal. Maybe you should compare and contrast with the stuff the BBC et al produce.

    I normally skip these “summary” type articles as a waste of time. This was actually quite interesting. Congratulations to SBS!

  • Gord

    Martin Keown getting a foot in:

    Danny Welbeck is a child in a sweet shop, coming to Arsenal.

    People talk about speed. But having a single fast person is not like having many fast people. If 10-40m sprints mean something, and Arsenal have 3+ athletes who are fastest in the EPL over distances in that range, there will be competition to improve, and they will get faster.

    Canada had a bunch of fast 100m sprinters after Ben Johnson got found out. I seen a picture of one of that new crop of sprinters (not Donovan Bailey, but in that group) doing biceps curls, I think at 180 pounds.

    I don’t think we are going to see Bellerin, Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Sanchez, Welbeck, … doing 180 pound bicep curls anytime soon. I rattled off 5 speedsters off the top of my head there, how many does Arsenal actually have? And don’t miscount the women’s team! A friend of mine coached U16 womens soccer (I live in North America, we don’t use the correct name). He went to a tournament in the Okanogan (southern interior BC). His daughter beat the BC 100m boys holder (also at the tournament) in a sprint. Same age group.

  • Gord has a blurb about why risk Wilshere against Galatasary.

    I am not going to reference the blurb, you can go look for yourself. I figured it was crap when they said “delicate ankle”.

    The blurb talks about how delicate Jack Wilshere’s ankle is. Which I think is probably all BS. I don’t think Jack Wilshere has a delicate ankle, I think that PGMOL officials will not call a foul on Wilshere because Mike Riley 😈 has told them not to. And so Jack Wilshere, even though he is on the England National team, has to endure yellow and red card tackles without any cards being given, just to satisfy the desires of Mike Riley 😈 . And The Premier League and The FA are too busy counting money to interfere with Mike Riley’s 😈 desires.

    There will be games where Arsenal wants to close everything down, and Jack Wilshere is a player that can do this. And we seen Jack Wilshere being brought into the game for Ozil at 77 minutes. Looking at commentary: Jack fouled once, and was fouled once. And that is all the mention I see in the commentary. I have not watched a lot of Arsenal football lately, and I am not going to say anything negative about Ozil. Wilshere is going to close down more than Ozil, just because they are different players with different abilities. Wilshere can make the passes, and will get into position to score. Perhaps not as well as Ozil, but better than average.

    Substituting Wilshere for Ozil, with Wilshere coming off an injury, is not a mistake. Galatasaray has targetted many players for injury, and been working at their plan. Ozil was probably on their TODO list, and never got caught. Wilshere helped plug up the midfield, and could rough it up more than Ozil does.

    It was a wonderful substitution, and the way the game had run, there was little danger of Wilshere being targetted for injury by the opposition. Note: I am saying targetted for injury, and not targetted for fouling.

    I did see the odd blurb during game time, about Galatasary purposely trying to have the game abandoned, and take the resulting 3-0 loss. It would be nice to think that if UEFA thought a team tried to get a game abondoned, that they could change the default score to something like 6-0.

  • Gord

    Media nonsense

    Why would any media site, decide on the 18th anniversery of Wenger being at Arsenal, to publish an article about the 18 things Wenger hasn’t done? Is the publisher looking to get hit in the head with a clue bat?

    With luck, perhaps this organization goes bankrupt soon. 18 seconds seems unlikely (as does 18 minutes or 18 hours). 18 days would be nice. 18 weeks or months would be workable.

  • Micheal Ram

    Past three games, Welbeck, Ozil and Sanchez had stepped up and played at a new level. Can’t wait for a stable and glorious midfield trinity now. Cazorla was excellent in that midfield role. Another Arteta in the making?

  • ARSENAL 13

    Cazorla was excellent in his deep role. Its so good to watch little Santi buzz around.

    And Szczesny had to do it. If he’d stayed on his feet and tried something else, people would’ve been talking how stupid he was to not make challenge.

    Sometimes these rules look so stupid. What do we expect a keeper to do? Not challenge? I don’t know the full details of the rule, but I think if the ball is moving away from the goal sending off should be avoided. This is one area where video ref. can be used.

  • Sleekwhale

    I think the god of soccer was buried in the Emirates turf, otherwise how would anyone explain to me how we major calls happen to not be in our favour! I’m beginning to see a pattern in our clamour for DM role as someone who is a good ball distributor rather than an enforcer! Intelligence and quick feet always pays our style rather than strength. ‘Twas good to watch the lads work their socks off but Welbeck isn’t a goal poacher, so I suspect we may have to rely more on the Big man against teams that park the bus, or welbeck’s got to improve. Giroud has 0 hat-trick for arsenal…I love a striker that’s hungry for goals. He’s good in his own right and he’s an arsenal player – makes him better than the average lot! Keep it simple against chelsea, no heroics just play with brains on your feet and bring 3points to Emirates! And Goodluck with the DECISIONS as we seem to be getting them wrong!

  • AL

    Nice to read those comments from Keown. Especially when many ex players are queuing up to knock the team and manager. I’ve found Keown one of the few to be always supportive of the team. Top guy.

  • AL

    Liverpool must buy to address their problems. Clearly the £117m spent this summer alone doesn’t go far enough. Oh, and so should utd, who didn’t spend anywhere near the required levels; only spent £150m!

  • Brickfields Gunners

    WOO HOO , HOO ! Awesome , guys ! Well done ! Up the Gunners !

  • andy bishop

    Welbeck provides much needed mobility up front..something Giroud cannot do. This allows our midfielders to properly express themselves. The oppo came to attack last night (three at the back) which played right into our hands. Having said that they were not as bad as we made them look because we now have proper forward movement up front. It was a joy to watch. Cant see Cahill and Terry being so charitable at the weekend. Interesting to see how we approach what is the biggest game so far this year.

  • InitialsBB


    Of course he is supportive, he is employed by the club, one of the few ex players of the Wenger era employed by the club. Agree that he is a top guy though.

  • Drew Gray

    on the flares. Its a disgrace that fans can behave like that. They started before the KO and were clearly trying to stop the game at 3-0. UEFA needs to ban Gala fans for the rest of the CL (but they won’t). As for the stewards, they were very hot on searching nags against Soton so I wonder what happened last night. I’m very glad my kids weren’t in the Clock End last night

  • Chapman's Ghost

    Welbeck was superb. And if people wonder about Wenger’s tactics they must surely be mystified by the Gala’s manager who very kindly played a disastrous three at the back and completely wasted Snjeider in the first half. Madness when you’ve got Ox, Sanchez and Welbeck’s pace and artistry to deal with. We looked really dangerous with all that pace.

    Melo should have had a red but on the whole the ref wasn’t terrible. I can’t understand how any two-footed challenges are not immediate reds. I wish Flamini had a little more discipline, a really stupid yellow he picked up, otherwise he had a decent game.

  • bob mac

    Sczeney red card; no problem.

    He made a slight error of judgement.

    None of us are perfect.

  • WalterBroeckx

    I think Szczesny just wanted to give Ospina a good chance to prove himself. And he sure took it with both hands!
    That save on the header was even on my blurry stream one of the best I have seen. And it got rather a few real time video replays 😉

  • john

    What a shame that, because of Mr. Wenger’s stubborn tight-fistedness, we have to make do with Welbeck, when we could have signed Balotelli and showed genuine ambition, like Brendan Rogers.

  • Sharpehunter

    No doubt whatsoever that AFC will get fined for the flare incidents. I personally consider it rather disturbing that people can get incendiary devices into a football stadium. If you want to know why read Nick Cleave’s book Incendiary!

    Sports stadiums have long been acknowledged as major terrorist targets, if people can get flares into a ground there is no reason why they can’t get other incendiary devices in. Security and screening technology needs to be reviewed at a serious level.

  • apo Armani

    @Mandy Dodd
    October 1, 2014 at 11:28 pm

    We sure did!!!!

  • apo Armani

    Question: Wil van Gaaaalll play 3 at the back when we meat later in the PL…if yes, ohhh what fun 🙂

  • apo Armani

    geezzz meet not meat 🙂

  • apo Armani

    Nice write Walter; I… like you am a-little superstitious before a game, the coming in to watch after ball is kicked off has also worked for me ( 🙂 ), also I like to see the flag (permanently up in the garden of course) waving as opposed to still.

  • AL

    I was going to comment on a post trying to explain our ‘easy win’ but best to leave it. Just got to enjoy the moment 🙂

  • AL

    Your pre game rituals had me in stitches 🙂 🙂 I also have one, which I think if I don’t watch portions of the game the team performs better(I’d left the room, for an unrelated reason though, when Chambo equalised against the spuds) . For obvious reasons, much more difficult to observe than yours 🙂

  • WalterBroeckx

    wait till Brickfields tells about his pre game rituals…. 🙂

  • AL

    Come on, Brickfields 🙂

  • Pat


    Enjoyed the comments and links.

  • AL

    Absolutely, we have to make do with Welbeck when we could have had Falcao and/or Balotelli.

    The below is for that non-existent section of our fans, John, who were on the verge of doing something drastic to themselves when he dithered and missed out on those two;

    Falcao 29, £24m, 5 matches, 0 goals
    Balotelli 24, £16m, 7 matches, 1 goal
    Welbeck 23, £16m, 6 matches, 6 goals

  • apo Armani

    October 2, 2014 at 10:20 am

    hahaha…mate I haven’t told you half the rituals I have and do…I change shoes and shirts if things aren’t going as planned…many times its worked and we have turned games around (you know we have come from behind many times in the last 20 games or so) – you guys can thank me later 🙂

  • apo Armani

    October 2, 2014 at 10:46 am

    “Falcao 29, £24m, 5 matches, 0 goals
    Balotelli 24, £16m, 7 matches, 1 goal
    Welbeck 23, £16m, 6 matches, 6 goals”

    But we NEED a ‘world class’ striker!! hahahahahahahahahaha

  • apo Armani

    …and a D**M 🙂

  • apo Armani

    So…I am too waiting with big interest to see what UEFA will do about the Flares!!!! That is hooliganism!!!!!

  • AL

    🙂 :)!!
    And I thought I was bad… Let’s see if Brickfields can top that 🙂
    Thanks for all that good luck though, keep it up 🙂

  • apo Armani

    October 2, 2014 at 11:02 am

    We do what we have to do…and do it in a positive way 😉

  • apo Armani

    Tell you another one; I am a subscriber to get EPL (as well as LaLiga,Bundes…and the Italians) on TV…I never watch on TV our games! NEVER prefer to get a good link with a good stream…it works wonders 🙂

  • apo Armani

    With this and that…I forgot to CONGRATULATE our BOSS…Happy 18 PROFESSOR – and many many more to come!!!

  • Sally Pally

    Talking of pre game rituals, it is interesting to try to understand the approach of Mourinho before a big match. He obviously prepares his teams very well to be able to stifle the next opposition, whereas Wenger seems to prepare the team to develop the ability and knowledge to be able to cope with whatever ANY opposition throws up. Obviously last year that failed miserably in ALL the away early kick-offs but quite brilliantly everywhere else. But we hope that Wenger will have looked at this and finally may have decided that attack is not always the best form of defence in a few select cases, like Chelsea, City and Liverpool away. That was the situation where we were found wanting last year and if that piece of the puzzle is put into place alongside the rest then the picture will be complete.

    The other pre game rituals we can analyse are the statements that the two managers expose to the media. We can see from these that Wenger is streets ahead of Mourinho there. Mourinho has the derogatory approach, making the most base and ugly kind of barbed comments, full of malice and a refusal to acknowledge the opposing manager’s brilliance. Wenger has no need for such an approach and it is below his more refined character. He is always full of praise of opposition managers until they let themselves down with base comments, as Mourinho has so often done.

    So I give Mourinho big credit for how he builds and prepares his teams to win but I give Wenger greater credit for the fact that he does not use dirty tactics. He prepares his teams to play very exciting attacking football and has done with one quarter of the money that Mourinho’s teams have cost. Petulance only gets you so far for so long. Wenger has built a tree with firm roots and he’s like a wise old ruler, the type who wins the war in the end, having lost many battles along the way. Whether the turn of the tide happens on Sunday or next time, we will have to see. But it is turning.

    It was great to see Danny Boy so delighted after his fantastic hat-trick and the whole team played really well. Great comments here this morning!

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Walter et Al – in truth I ‘ve abandoned my ‘rituals’ that I ‘ve observed since 2006 , as of yesterday .
    This season the team are on their own . No more help from me .
    My only concession is that I don’t watch the games live . Not too difficult as the games start at around 3AM !
    But have to confess that I did do the ‘deed’ for the Dortmund game ,but was unable to sleep after that and ended watching the game ! Damn ! Jinxed it !
    Last night , I was quite sleepy after a few glasses of wine and slept off ! But did ‘celebrate’ this morning after finding out the score !
    Did go to work late though ,but with ‘that’ grin on my face !
    WOO HOO , HOO !

  • Brickfields Gunners

    If you smile when no one else is around, you really mean it. ~Andy Rooney

    Keep smiling — it makes people wonder what you’ve been up to. ~Author Unknown

    A smile is something you can’t give away; it always comes back to you. ~Author Unknown

    If you would like to spoil the day for a grouch, give him a smile. ~Author Unknown
    (Works on the AAAAs too – really pisses them off !)

    The man who smiles when things go wrong has thought of someone to blame it on. ~Robert Bloch.
    ( Yup , you’ve guessed it ! Its them again !)

    All quotes from…

  • AL

    So you have retired from your pre game rituals since, erm, yesterday 🙂 Will be sending you a bottle of the finest port each time the boys play though 🙂 Will be hoping you still make it to work the next day though 🙂

  • Brickfields Gunners

    They mention of AAAA also pisses them off too ,as well as quite a few ‘well meaning ‘( read condescending ) fans . Yeah right !

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Al – I think that if I drink some wine before the game . that should settle the nerves of the Arsenal players !
    That is my new excuse as a new ritual !
    When queried by a patient today , I told him that I was late because of the game !
    As Malaysians are mostly EPL crazy , very few would doubt you !

  • AL

    Very valid points about the managers approaches. One thing I’d probably add is unlike other managers, Wenger doesn’t prepare his players to approach any match with a negative purpose. He’s a firm believer of positive thinking, and I suspect that’s why he manages to get the best out of seemingly average. Players who suddenly start looking very average again when they move on from Arsenal. I think that’s the main reason you’ll find Wenger will turn an average player into a world class player (eg, Adebayor, Song, etc) while the likes of mourinho will succeed in turning world class players into average players (Mata, Torres, Hazard, etc).

    So regarding the point of setting the team to not focus on attack only be able to shift to defensive in order to avoid huge losses like last year’s, there’s a trade off there. It could work, but might have a detrimental effect on the players if they’re told to blitz the opposition one day, and something else the other day. Given the choice it may be easier to go with the always positive philosophy as it serves you well over a greater period, albeit you’ll be susceptible to that odd heavy loss here and there.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    An AAAA’s life …..(or the real reason why they flock here and try to shit on us !) a ‘flow ‘ chart everyone can understand ..

  • AL

    Lucky you, wish I could use the same excuse too 🙂

  • Sally Pally

    AL – I agree that it is much more exciting that way but also often much more painful when we come up against the ‘bus parkers’. I hope that you are right and that it works this time and as we get even stronger. Last year, Mourinho made it look so easy to beat us.

    There was a web article on the telegraph site about Ferguson’s tactics to beat Arsenal this morning, from his biography and it made me wonder why Wenger doesn’t seemed to have developed a counter-strategy for these types of games yet.

    Some amongst us and certainly some of the younger ones would take winning at the cost of not having our full backs sprint up the pitch at every available opportunity. I know I would and we will be annoyed if the same thing happens again as last year. But I always believe that we will get the better of them soon enough. Fingers crossed it will be on Sunday.

  • apo Armani

    @Sally Pally

    The link to the article you gave has the same author as the link below (Jeremy Wilson)…THIS JOKER thinks we (Arsenal) should also get punished by UEFA for the flare throwing last night!!!

    If thats how serious a ‘journalist’ he is – I won’t bother reading too much into WHATEVER HE WRITES!

  • Sally Pally

    apo – Well spotted. I will bear this in mind. They’re trying it from all angles again, aren’t they. Now someone is claiming that Wenger believes that Sanchez slows us down. If it wasn’t so hilariously stupid, you’d seriously wonder…

  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    I think Cazorla, upon contact, should have just gone to theground in spectacular fashion.
    But this may not have been the Arsenal way, and the Boss may have probably frowned on it.
    In fact, it is better for us if Muslera and Melo were to play against Borussia Dortmund.
    That would help the score to less than 6-0, with Melo probably as a defensive midfielder.
    I agree with Walter, this was most definitely a “match de gala” as the French would say.
    In Levantine Arabic, we say “gala gala” about somebody toying with inferior opposition.

  • FinnGooner

    Not sure if you have seen these photos from Emirates (he works for Arsenal and posted three photos).
    I really hope (but don’t believe they will) Gala hve contacted Arsenal and told they are willing to pay for damages.

    Good thing we have away match this week, since there would be some bad seats in away section…