Arsenal v Hull. Everyone is injured; there’s no point turning up.

By Bulldog Drummond

At last at last my jolly chums – a match to go and watch.  Do we want to hear again that Mathieu Debuchy has an ankle and Olivier Giroud has a tibia?  I say no!  We have a squad, and a squad that is strong and shall see us through.

Mesut Özil like those gone before him, has our best wishes, as do Walcott and Gnabry upon their returns in the reserves.  Commits to travelling from the far outer reaches of the empires (well Northamptonshire, the HQ of Untold) mean I am jotting my notes before the reserve match on friday.  But the home match at Meadow Park should get a few more visitors than normal.

Laurent Koscielny may or may not miss out having been crocked with France.  The general feeling is that Nacho Monreal will be alongside Per Mertesacker.  But here is a little news that slipped under the radar of gloom, dismay, despondency and the lifting up of dairy cattle; Aaron Ramsey starts training on Monday and will be on the beach for the Anderlecht game.

Arteta (another man who has experience of the early stages of veal production) is ready to return.

Héctor Bellerín could play at full back – and for those who moan and gripe about this, then I’m sorry chums, but I’m with Untold on this.  We need a youth system to help us bring through Jack from childhood, and the Ox, Theo, Arran and the like from their academy years.  And if you have a youth system, you need to give the players some games.  Bellerin has a huge talent, and he needs games to build confidence.

The general feeling is that Hull think their best chance is with free kicks and corners.  The ref will obviously have read this, and given the way refereeing has been going this season will oblige them with a multiplicity.  You might expect him to carry a back up can of white paint for the occasion.

So what have we got?  How about this for a line up…


Bellerin, Mertesacker, Monreal, Gibbs;

Arteta, Wilshere;


Sánchez,                                            Cazorla;


Lazing on the beach we might see

Martínez or Ospina (if he has recovered from knocks and his international trip to South America), Rosicky, Podolski, Flamini, Diaby, Campbell, Coquelin, Zelalem

While we have an injury list the size of the old London phone books Hull have two injuries: McGregor (shoulder) and Snodgrass (knee).  Diamé is said to be tired.  He went to Tunisia which isn’t that far away and has clocks that tick tock to the same timing as BST, so he shouldn’t be tired.  But my chums who have just returned said the food wasn’t up to much.

The bookies make us odds-on favourites which is always worrying – I remember only too well our second defeat at the Ems, when Hull took us by surprise.  That was in September 2008.  But then thanks to the amazingly detailed Arsenal Anniversary Files that are on the Arsenal History Society site, I went back and re-read that great story of 17 March 2009 when Phil Brown and co accused Fabregas of wearing an improper coat.  It is a great tale and worthy of a read.

We also think of the Cup Final as well – 2-0 down after five seconds (at least that’s the story the press were using) and a barrage of insults over the PA from Terry Neill at half time.  The press’ current take on the game is nothing to do with the fantastic fight back, or the brilliant goals.  No, what we have is “Had Alex Bruce’s header gone in, the Gunners would surely still be searching for a first trophy in a decade.”

Here’s another one that is being thrown around.

“This is Arsenal’s joint-second worst Premier League start to a season under Arsène Wenger, with 10 points from seven games, the same as the 1998-99 campaign.”   What is missing from that “analysis” (I use the word in its loosest form) that season we finished runners up, just one point behind Man U.  We would have won but for a slip on 29 November with a home draw against Middlesbrough.  A win would have given us the title.

And one you don’t see so much – Arsenal have won the last five against Hull.

Here’s another good one.  Arsenal are unbeaten at home in 21 league matches.  In fact the last defeat was the opening day of last season when we lost 3-1 to Aston Villa.

Hull haven’t won successive Premier League games for over a year.  But they have scored in each of their Premier League fixtures this season.

So that’s about it I think.

There are details of today’s anniversaries and recent stories on the home page.

Don’t forget we have a live feature for the game here

75 Replies to “Arsenal v Hull. Everyone is injured; there’s no point turning up.”

  1. The only bad news I can see out of the U21 game, is that we didn’t win. Walcott, Gnabry, Diaby,

    There is an interview with Gnabry at the Arsenal site.

    Jack Jebb (sp?) has apparently been sent on loan to Stevenage.

    Arteta is back, Ramsey is too soon, Sanogo is too soon, Rosicky may be back. That is from Of course, the media will have their own interpretation.

  2. 1.cazorla in the middle. Pod on the left. Bench ox.
    2. Ox and theo came through Southamptons youth system

  3. They will have their own interpretation? Oh, let them. They always will. Good thing is, it matters not. Our own is more relevant. I wonder why everyone goes with Monreal at centerback and not Hayden. Barring the butterflies in tummy that he’ll be having his prmiership debut if selected, I would go with him partnering BFG in the heart of defence. No better time to cast the vote of confidence in the young man’s ability to come good and gain vital experience. He is the future and the future starts today. Need I say how bright the future is? Or what colour it is? Red and white, and very bright! So Isaac Hayden for me, and a huge shot of confidence up the arm for the boys , that we are behind them all the way.

  4. Yet another team worth watching despite the multitude of injuries.

    It will be interesting to see how Bellerin gets on, very well no doubt.

  5. 1st home game this season I will have missed ,, sure my presence will not be missed a must win 3 point I feel .

  6. Time to shut everyone up. We play the best football, we have a wealth of talent and a nice winning run will see us back in the mix. Forget the injuries and focus on comforting thoughts like…the spuds getting stuffed, Moureen moaning when Palace win 1-0 and Danny the Champion of the World getting his second Gunners hattrick.

  7. I also don’t know why Hayden is not mentioned anywhere. He isn’t that bad! I would play Coquelin at RB instead of Bellerin tto. I think Sanchez may not start, we could see Podolski on the left.

  8. Agree with Monreal at centre back, he looked OK against Man City at wembley.

    Maybe Sanchez on the bench. Think he played for Chile tuesday night into the early hours wednesday morning. Might not be fully recovered what with jetlag an all.

    Young Bellerin or possibly the more experienced Coq at right back.

    Arsenal must find a way of creating more scoring opportunities. They do have more quality going forward this season.

  9. Where’s Miquel? He’s a CB too. He can LCB and Per on the RCB. Monreal is a obvious choice though. People always underestimate his defensive abilities and intelligence. Again, agree with Bulldog, Hull might bombard us with aerial balls. I think Arsene got a plan for that. Agree with Couqelin in RB. Maybe Bellerin should play in RM. Let him get used to it. The next five games or so, Arsene got an opportunity to rotate the squad and discover wonders like every season. Podolski, Diaby and Campbell can a part too. What’s the point of squad depth if they never play? I believe in Hayden if Arsene decides to start him. He is really good, just need experience.

  10. Aside from the risk of imbalance in the squad and any negative effect of introducing too many players at the same time, I think Bellerin at RB, Hayden at CB, and Coquelin in midfield is not bad. Gives these boys vital game time, because you never know when you’ll inevitably have to call on them. Anybody can be injured at any point in the season and these same guys may have to be caled upon at the shortest notice. A bit of rotation may not be bad at this time imo.

  11. Starting lineup: Szczesny, Bellerin, Mertesacker, Monreal, Gibbs, Flamini, Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Cazorla, Alexis, Welbeck

    Substitutes: Martinez, Ajayi, Coquelin, Arteta, Rosicky, Ramsey, Campbell

    No Podolski. I think he will leave in January. Unless he is also is injured of course

  12. COYG! I think youre right Walter about Poldi.lets hope he isnt injured.
    COYG! Aha and Amen!

  13. That’s like it… Boooooooo for the referee from the home crowd.

    Come on…make it loud. Let them know we are watching.

  14. And now someone tell me we should not say its the ref fault.
    oh its just annoying and boring, wvery single game.

  15. 3min 30 seconds the time GK injury stopped the game.
    3min added, not to forget the time wasting that happened before.
    and 3min waitimg for the Hull player to play the throws.
    No we should not moan about the ref.nooooo

  16. @Va Cong,
    yes again, it was a so obvious foul on Flamini ( last defender). He was going to pass back the ball to our GK. And diame held him from behind, took him of the ball, went and scored.
    Even our players went furious at the ref. Its impossible he and his assistant couldmt see that.

  17. Still Va cong, we are playing so well. But they are parking the bus. And I believe if we score one more time, we could win this. We just need the lead which was stolen from us.

  18. terrible goal to concede – WTF referee????
    We simply have to win thsi game but we are not looking sharp in front of goal.

  19. Dreadful refereeing as ever.

    We would be top if these clowns knew anything about the game.

  20. get in theeeeeerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeeeee, come on lets have another one COYG!!!!!

  21. What can I say that I haven’t said time and again…Is there a ref in the PL capable of being FAIR?!

  22. Thankfully we got the equalizer but that was very poor. Not good enough and not helped by a truly terrible referee. Still though, we only have ourselves to blame – not good enough in front of goal and really poor defending for the scond goal.
    We’re 11 points behind Chelsea and drifting downwards… and picking up more injuries. Bad times.

  23. By the end of the league when we are 7pts of the Champion, remember those two points( deja vu) before blaming Wenger.

    With all the pressure from the fans and he did this? No its not incompetence, its damn cheating.

  24. Dreadful refereeing as ever.
    Second that, looking forward to the review.

    But we were a little complacent after the first goal.
    Then it was a fight after the equaliser.
    Then 1-2. OMG.

    Well done for recovering, but 3 points lost and goal differences lost.

  25. @Jayram, when the opposing team is parking the bus, we need those brilliance of Wilshere, Sanchez and Ox dribbling. And when they do that and get fouled, and the ref give nothing. Dont blame the players for being poor on goal.

    Hull went in to park the bus, and the pressure was on them when it all started. After we scored our first, they went lost and all the pressure was on them. Had the first half been 1-0, second could have been more open from them.

    Plus Jayram, look how we played before their goal and after, and see hpw our players get frustrated. Its everytime,this happens, and dont tell me they are well paid professionals. They are human and they knew at that moment, they had a huge mountain to climb.

  26. @yassin I do think the ref was terrible today but there are too many players in our team who are not performing. Sanchex was brilliant today and Campbell played well. I though Bellerin had a decent game too.
    However, Oxlade-Chamberlain was really terrible. everything he did seemed to breal down. We really really missed Ozil today. Apart from his brillinat running off the ball to create space he scares defenders and is able to thread passes at acute angles to open up play.
    Despite the ref, that was not good enough from us today. Wenger must surely change appraoch. IF every team is going to park teh bus and the ref is always going to be against us, we MUST change things up. We can’t keep banging our heads against the wall.

  27. When last did we get a decent ref performance? How many points have refs cost us this season already? Seems like everything is being done to gift chel$ki the title as early as possible, and eliminate any potential threats to them. Reminds me of fergie’s last season – all manner of cheating went on in the beginning of the season to give manure a good head start, with something like 1 penalty per game for the first 10 or so games. We were being screwed game after game in a similar manner during the opening period of that season. This season is following a similar pattern.
    Something stinks in this league, big time.

  28. Nail on head C4. We would have won every game this season if it wasn’t for the referees – but the FA cannot allow Arsenal to win the league. Every one in football knows this and it is disgusting

  29. Then what do you suggest Jayram?
    What should Wenger do? I am sitting here thinking the only one who have the solution is us the fans, but we dont want to do anything.

    As for the Ox, he wasnt terrible until after 60, in which he usually lose his stamina and concentration. Here the lack of players due to injury is the reason.

    Wenger is not a magician, he can’t make all our players give 200% and today the reason we drew was Sanchez brillianca, otherwise we would be here with no points at all. If we want the league, then we need to get fair play first.

    I cant find anyway to win such games if the ref is that biased. And he was biased, specially second half.

  30. What was the ref doing? Apart from missing the widely-reported foul that allowed Hull’s goal, of course.

    Just counting the legitimate goals in the match, Arsenal did enough to win. What more can people ask? If the score ended up 2-1 (as it should have), no one would be complaining.

  31. Yes the ref was poor and gifted them their 1st goal but we were also poor for large parts of the game. I am the first to bemoan the poor decisions we are subjected to but the fact remains that even with the injuries we have and the dodgy reffing we should be beating the likes of Hull with no problem. Most of our squad seem to be under performing at the moment, we need to find some consistent form fast and cut out the silly mistakes. Very disappointing afternoon improved marginally by the Spurs result. The team need to buckle down, work hard and rise to the challenge and give a much better performance in the next game in Europe. Come on lads, we are all behind you, we know you can do it! COYG!

  32. @ Yassin

    I agree, there isn’t so much more the players can do if they are fouled when defending or attacking and the ref refuses to acknowledge it. This essentially cripples the team, and it’s a massive advantage for the opposition, especially when they KNOW that they can get away with anything, from regular fouls to yellow / red card and penalty offences. I said after the chel$ki game that teams would use chel$ki’s filthy style as a template, KNOWING they will be allowed to play like that against us. And lo and behold, diame could confidently foul his way to a goal.
    Fellow Gooners, this is not our season. riley and and band of cheats will not allow it, after the scare we gave them through most of last season. When chel$ki has a 20 point lead, we might get our first penalty, and begin to see some semblance of decent whistle-blowing from the men in black. Until then, our squad will be kicked down to the bare bones. This on is between the 2 clubs with oil money. We clearly haven’t paid our protection fees.

  33. @Yassin I really don’t know – it is down to Wenger to find the solutions. But the outcomes are clear – the current approach aligned with the impact of referees is not working effectively. We find it hard to pass through teams and we are dropping many points we should not. I would hope that Wenger has some tricks up his sleeve to change things around.

  34. Their equalizer should never have been…at a crucial point in the game…had that not happened we would have strolled though with a big score. Thats why ref decisions are affecting in a negative way our games – resulting in dropped points!

    All top sides have bad parts during the 90 minutes but compounded by WRONG decisions at key points in the match can change everything…IMO!

  35. “It is a very disappointing result because we were very unlucky with the referee’s decision for the first goal.
    “They had two shots and scored two goals – it is a long time since we’ve dominated so much and not won the game.”


  36. @jayramfootball
    I agree, we are having difficulty playing against the park the bus opponents. We need to find a solution fast. I thought we started well and finshed well but the long part in between was pretty lack lustre. After they equalised I thought our heads dropped and instead of a ‘We’ll show the cheating bastards’ type attitude they were more ‘Oh no, not again, why always us’.

  37. @Mick, everybody has difficulty playing against the park the bus team, all you need os to take the lead and they will open, remember City against Astov Villa lately, they one two in the dying minutes. We took the lead, and I though we werr going for a good win, and then the ref gave them the goal. They deserved nothing of that.
    Our players after looked frustrated, yes, lost concetration, yes. But any team who suffered what we suffered must be so, they are human after all. i felt oh come on, is it one of those days.

    When a team like Hull play againsy a good team, all they wish for is to defend the first hal, and then pressure will all be on the other team. As long as they dont score, they will be frustrated. Look at Chelsea, they go crazy in the opening minutes, and then what? They wait for the other team to open up and they score.
    we did this today, and the ref maxe his joke.

  38. Look at the statistics we got and the one City and Chelsea got today, and you will see we were playing well.

  39. Please guys stop using the ref’s as an excuse. It’s just pure laziness and a bullshit way of deflecting blame towards Wenger. Yes the ref’s have not been the best but over the course of the entire season every team will suffer the same at some stage swings and roundabouts. It’s up to Wenger and the players to come up with solutions to counter any of that. Do you think the invincibles didn’t get bad refereeing decisions please…. WE played some completely beautiful football at times against Hull but we still lack that team leader and a true beast of a CDM to take the game by the scruff of the neck and get the team over the line for the 3 point’s. That’s Wenger’s fault the absolute last buck stops with him and that was outlined at the AGM. And this is our problem the man has lost it as one of the top coaches in the world. Most coaches and teams know exactly how to set up against us now that’s why we are getting thumped regularly by the big boys. At the start of the last transfer period we were told by Gazidis that we had $100 + million in the bank and could compete with any of the top 5 clubs in the world in the transfer market now we are being told that we don’t have a hoard of cash because recent results have been poor and Wenger is being shown up for what he is old and out dated.. Shame, Shame ,Shame the club is conning everybody whilst we pay the highest ticket prices in the land…. “Think about that”

  40. ” Another truth……. post”

    It was like watching Vieira when Diame ran through the defence yesterday, even the slight pull back was Vieiraesque, Diame wanted it more and used his strength, that is what is grating me.

    Not one of our players is physically imposing unlike early wenger teams, other teams would shit their pants seeing Adams, Keown, Bould, Petit, Vieira and even Bergkamp who would stick the boot in, they knew they would get a shoeing if they dared to even look at the ball, now we are the one’s being bullied and the wengerites cry foul and ask for special protection and for the rules of the game to be changed for the vertically challenged Snow White pantomime line up that is our midfield.

    Some fan’s have very short memories.

  41. @jonfromwellington, desist from being a sore loser. We would not have won every match this season, do you seriously think we’d have beaten Chelsea? Did we register more than one shot on target against them? We have been very average compared to last season, we’re nowhere near winning the league and the FA isn’t stopping us winning the league, why would they, and anyway they don’t have to, we’re doing a fine job of it ourselves.

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