Man C v Arsenal. The silence of the sheep.

By Tony Attwood

I only have one shirt that carries an Arsenal player’s name.  It is in the red of the original Woolwich team, and has a picture of Pires on the front and the “7” on the back.  It is my lucky shirt.

I wear it rarely, for fear that wearing it too much will drain the luck out of it, and it will let me down.  Besides I don’t believe in luck, just the randomness of the universe, and the fact that hard work and application usually gets you through.

But something made me wear it yesterday.  And we didn’t get any luck.  Instead we were sensational.

What made Santi be so incredible?  Ozil waiting in the wings, probably.  Santi was staggering, brilliant, amazing, awesome, incredible – and that was just as a defender.

As for the afternoon itself, it started badly for the BBC – and for me.  I was late getting back from visiting three of my grandchildren and heard the build up and first few minutes on BBC Radio 5 while driving home.  And what a mess it was.   They made the point that as southern softies all of our players had long sleeves on whereas only five of the Man C team had long sleeves.  Arsenal had lost before they started, they said.  It showed we were not up for it.  It really told you everything you needed to know.

Except of course the twirps had failed to do any research.  Chapman introduced the notion of unity in style and dress, and after his sudden death the managers who followed (Shaw, Allison, Whittaker – all men who had worked under Chapman and worshipped his style and approach) did the decent thing and carried on the tradition.  No one has changed it since.  Allison actually worked for the BBC for years as a commentator and was the voice of football for years.  You’d think they might have kept a note.

80 years of tradition and the hopeless BBC commentary team hadn’t noticed.  I can understand some trivial turnip not bothering to do any research, but someone should have been on top of it.

Of course they did correct themselves later, but it was hopeless of them not to know and yet go ploughing in with the sniggering and laughing at Arsenal.

As for the match, beyond Santi I thought Francis Coquelin was superb.  We have had him for years and years, he has come up through the academy and indeed Untold was talking about him from the moment he first turned up in the Austrian training camp we used to have before the club insisted on us touring.  He joined us in 2008, has now played some 25 or so league games, and is ready.  Another Wenger triumph.

I would also say a word for Monreal and Bellerin.  Everyone will talk about Santi Cazorla and Giroud, but those two really did secure the back.   Neither is first choice, but yesterday you would not have known it.

Of course there was criticism of our possession.   35% compared with 48% last year.  But when we get 60% possession and lose we are criticised.  We are always criticised.  It comes with the territory.  The only comment I was really interested in was Thierry’s and he made the point repeatedly that we played as a team. Fair enough.

But that was the best bit of Sky.   After we went 1-0 up their commentary was all about Arsenal’s embarrassing defeats and how listening to Arsene Wenger had become “tiresome.”    However by the end even they had to recognise a classy performance when it smacked them in the face.  Shame they didn’t apologise about some of their earlier comments.

Better in terms of Sky yesterday was the fact that they did give a passing mention to Manchester C, FFP, the transfer of Bony and Lampard.  They missed out the bit about the Lampard contract not being within Premier League rules, but still, it was better than nothing.   And the next round of FFP enquiries looks like being fun.

And Sky also gave us the news that at their publicly financed stadium Manchester C differentiate between the seats for the subs.  Their seats are heated, and there are even heaters for the players’ feet, so they hit the ground all warmed up.  Such facilities don’t exist for the away team.

I’m sure there are no regs on this, but even so.  The next thing you know is away teams will go back to sitting on actual benches.

However, beyond the team, the heroes of yesterday were our away support.  I don’t do very many away matches now, what with each home match being an away in terms of the journey, although I used to do many more.  Our away support has always been great – and yesterday on Sky that is what you heard much of the time, until someone on Sky’s tech team turned that microphone down.

So, what else from the mass of emotions yesterday?

Dean?  I await Walter’s commentary, but to my non-ref eyes he looked ok.  Maybe he read our referee preview and thought his normal tactics were just too dodgy after such a commentary!  Unlikely but you never know.

Santi?  What can I say?  He was a superb defender, attacker, midfielder.

Ramsey?  Rusty, I’d say.  But we have the cup next week and he can get himself back together – and Ozil and Theo can have a game too.

As the game started we were told Manchester Accountants were a second half team, that Arsenal had never replaced Vieira and Gilberto Silva, and that the players who come from south America all say how wonderful it is England because the fans support you, rather than get on your back.  How fortunate that the aaa don’t actually make it to matches.

However this was jolly, it was fun, and it was a huge relief.   That piece we ran about the similarities between this season and the second double season, when we started after Xmas in much the same position as this year, might not be so fanciful after all.   But even if they are (fanciful that is) this was a Sunday to savour.

Those aaa who insist that it is relevant only to comment on one match and then generalise outwards.  Of course they are still wrong in that, but I love their silences on days like today.

Thank you Arsenal.

Here are the rules if you want to comment


111 Replies to “Man C v Arsenal. The silence of the sheep.”

  1. Dean missed a couple of yellows for Kompany(penalty) and Fenandinho a pull back on Ramsey that was let go as an advantage and not come back to unlike for Arsenal.

  2. Glad I found this article, it’s a more eloquent version of the thoughts banging around my head – A nice read for the morning after!


  3. Trevor Sinclair: “At Etihad Stadium on Sunday, it seemed that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger finally realised he cannot play his usual open style of attacking football when his team are away from home against the best teams in the Premier League. Instead, the Gunners were set up to defend and keep a clean sheet. Right from the start, there were times when all 11 of their players were defending deep in City’s half.”

    The above is on the BBC website, on an article saying Wenger finally heeds advice and puts defence first in matches away from home. Maybe it’s me just being thick but could someone please explain to me how all Arsenal players could have been ‘defending deep in City’s half’??

    For that to be true then we would be attacking! And this is the expertise we have to listen to. SMH.

  4. ref was better than he usually is…but why no card for Kompanys penalty conceder?
    Did he deliberately block Monreal? yes, = penalty, did he deny a goalscoring opportunity ? yes, Giroud played his pass right to Monreals run, he would have been one-on-one with the keeper = red card. If the ref somehow concluded that a goalscoring chance was not denied, then a deliberate foul in the box to prevent a player from potentially receiving a pass has to be a clear yellow card. Curiously no commentator at the time opined that there should have been a card, most whined that it had been ‘soft’ that Monreal had ‘gone down too easily’ that the ref ‘hadn’t seen it’ Strange that we don’t hear that when Rooney goes down like a sack of spuds when he feels a defenders breath.

  5. I noticed right from the start that our normal high line of defence was not being followed.
    This paid off because Citeh never looked positive in attack and our shape in defending was inviolate.
    “Ils ne passeront pas” was the order of the day and how well it turned out.
    A few more welcome surprises will no doubt await us before the season’s end.

  6. Great win but you dont get any trophies for one game and all the humiliations we suffered away from home in the last 4 seasons are still relevant. You have to hand it to Arsene though, it only took four years a barracking at Stoke station to make him change his ideas. Its stunning what the team can do when they are coached and the pensioner has a full week to work on a game

  7. A driver was stuck in traffic jam on the road outside Parliament ( or BBC or whatever you pet peeve is !).
    Suddenly ,a man knocks on the window .
    The driver rolls down the window and asks , “What is going on ?”
    ” Rebels ( Or disgruntle workers ) have kidnapped all the politicians ( or pundits or management ),and are demanding a million dollar ransom.
    Otherwise , they are going to douse them all in petrol set them on fire. We are going from car to car collecting donations.”
    ” How much is everyone giving on an average ?” the driver asks ….
    The man replies ….

    ” Roughly 2 liters each !”

    (NB – this being an old joke and the petrol prices was then at its peak , so they were very generous !)

  8. ThomB

    Make yourself look a complete prick first thing on a Monday morning why don’t you.

  9. Proper team performance..reminded me of Bayern Munich away a couple of years ago. Bellerin and Coquelin could be the “finds” of the season.

  10. A, hardly surprising, inconsistency in the application of the laws by Dean. At the Emirates he gave a penalty and then couldn’t wait to send-off Kos; at the Etihad a penalty but not even a yellow card for Kompany …

  11. , you guys can go on about how you never slagged of this team of manager etc but what you are failing to address is that a performance of yesterdays nature is precisely what many many many fans (on both sides of the wenger fence) have been craving for time now.

    Do you think wenger would get so much stick if he had decided to start setting his team up in big away games to do what we did yesterday 4 years ago? not sure he would

    Its so refreshing to see that dimension to the team

    And it just highlights are great technique and play all the more when we are happy for them to have the possession stay strong and pounce..

    Fair play to the team and manager yesterday, i really hope that we can see that style more often in games where we are playing high class opposition who can hurt us

    My top players in order were

    Sanchez rosicky

    One centre back signing and we are good to go ,

  12. Those who say its one game forget that in December 2014 Wenger was in contention for manager of the month meaning that the club did well. In 2015 we have played four and won three while losing one. If you combine December and January we played 11 games, won 8, lost 2, and drawn 1. In the league, over the same period we played 9, won 6, lost two and drawn 1, getting 19 points out of a possible 27. So the City results when taken into context shows that in the past two months Arsenal has not been as bad as people claim.

    Looking at the league fixture list, we play 11 winnable games before playing Chelsea at home. The only sticky games will be Tottenham away and the Merseyside teams. I have watched the totts for some time now, and notice that although they play some exciting football they lack the spine to protect leads, and against a determined team they can lose heavily. I therefore believe that if we take yesterday’s determination to the lane we will collect three points. Everton are a pale shadow of their past self with us at home we can beat them without major issues. The same can be said of Liverpool.

    It therefore means that if we maintain our determination, by the time we play Chelsea, we will be 72 points to the good. Avoid a defeat against Chelsea and Man United and beat the rest, we will finish with 83 points at the least. This is enough to finish 3rd. There is therefore so much to look forward to this season.

  13. Tom

    People may of noticed that there’s a general consensus here abouts that we don’t get a fair shake from Referees.

    This assertion is backed up by years and years of Refereeing assessments.

    It is also backed up by irrefutable statistics gleaned over many seasons (not one weekend, 6 Months, or even just one season, but many seasons) but many many seasons, such as:

    -Arsenal get less penalties than our direct rivals, in fact since Riley took over 23 for, 32 against, compared to Chelsea, 43 for, 13 against.

    -Arsenal get more Yellow cards per foul than ANY OTHER TEAM, in fact since Riley took over a Yellow every 4.58 fouls when the average is about 6.5 and the best is about 8.5

    But when all this is pointed out, you still accuse us of paranoia. Still accuse us of playing the victim and worse, effectively accuse the assessors of lying.

    Far from being made up, these statistics have been used by UA to great effect in predicting, not only which Referee will be put in charge of which match, but more over, how that particular Referee will handle the game, with incredible accuracy.

    Yesterdays performance from Dean was as predictable as Night following day.

    So TOM, as one of the most dismissive of such statistics please explain how Deans performance was so predictable.

    Okay he gave us a penalty. But praising him for giving a penalty that was a nailed on penalty (despite MOTD’s protestations to the contrary) is faint praise indeed.

    Other than that he allowed Kompany to remain on the pitch despite 2 Yellow card offences and a possible straight Red on Alexis (that he 100% saw as he gestured to play the advantage).

    As well as booking 3 Arsenal players, all for there FIRST offence, for a grand total of 5 fouls.

    The bottom line is, no Dean didn’t stitch us up yesterday but it wasn’t for the want of trying.

    He allowed a City player to remain on the pitch that 100% should of been sent off and if our players hadn’t played with such control and self discipline we would of definitely been down to 10 men. A ratio of 3 cards for every 5 fouls is irrefutable proof of that, or though I’ve no doubt you’ll suggest otherwise.

    You are so quick to dismiss all these statistics yet time and time again they prove to be incredible barometers for what is going to happen.

    So come on Tom explain how Deans performance was anything other than as predictably poor as he always is.

  14. ThomB – I echo Jambug.

    Tony good write up – what an enjoyable performance by Arsenal, the whole team were magnificent. Coquelin – what can I say but clearly Arsene Knows Best! Santi was just awesome.

    Dean seemed to have an aversion to carding Man City players most notably Kompany; still don’t know why Ramsey was booked. Dean had an uncanny knack for getting in the way of Arsenal attacks and I’m sure there were several corners he gave wrongly and a few throw ins if my memory serves me correctly.

    Decided to watch MOTD – who knows why it’s not something I try to do often – had to endure the truly lightweight Savage. During the match the commentator a well know establishment bottom licker insisted that last year at the Etihad we could have lost by 9 or 10.

    But never mind I’m still smiling – what a wonderful way to start off Monday morning.

    Thank you Arsenal.

  15. Forgot to make a point earlier, which someone else has also said, we conceded 16 corners yet Man City only had a couple of half chances from that. Magnificent example of effective zonal marking.

    And I can now reveal that Ospina touched the ball precisely ONCE in the first 28 minutes – to take a free kick some 30 yards from goal. No goal kicks, no back passes, no overhit through balls to field. If that is not a dominant defensive performance I can’t think what would be.

    Just one touch – and none at all from open play.

  16. like quite a few others, I had a strange feeling about this game, and posted accordingly on here.
    I get the same gut feeling about the Champions league – I dont think we can win it this season, but have a feeling we are about to embark on quite a ride, possibly taking down a giant in the process!

  17. Jambug

    Why don’t you stop bleating like a little girl. Who is Tom? The only Tom i can see on here seemed to enjoy the article. You’re the definition of a keyboard warrior always bitching or slagging somebody off behind the safety of your computer.

  18. Gooneress really? you’re going to complain about Deans performance? he was fine he protected our players , let the game flow, c’mon for once he served us well

    Tinalex,, you are totally missing the point in your analysis there i think. Its largely irrelevant our record up to the point of yesterdays game. The fact that makes yesterdays game remarkable, is that we beat man city away and did it in a manner that made them look useless. We sacrificed our usual game and played with supreme intelligence, the flare play was accentuated by that.

    It was a watershed moment for wenger and arsenal. The beauty of the compactness and team work was there and its nice to see as opposed to our usual chaotic madness when we dont have the ball..

    I dont know what caused yesterdays change of tack, but i hope we see more of the same in applicable situations

    We live in 3 dimensional space, we have the 4th one of time and a whole host of others predicted by modern science. Its about time Arsenal had more than one dimension to their reality, and thankfully we seem to have found it

  19. Mandy
    Yes, I recall you saying something like you had the feeling we would pull it off. I on the contrary was not optimistic at all. I knew we had the tools in our locker to upset City, but the ref and the fact we were playing away made that thought seem like sheer fantasy.

    Does anyone have the gif of Santiago dancing after Giroud scored from his freekick? If so can you post it on here please. Saw it a few times on Sky and thought it was so funny 🙂

  20. ZOON

    If you don’t know Tom or his historical ridiculing of UA and there Refereeing reviews then I suggest you do some research before throwing unsubstantiated insults about.

  21. Madetolovemagic – come again! I’m not sure what match you’re talking about but I’m referring to the Man C 0-2 Arsenal played on the 18th of Jan at the Ethiad… the one with Mike Dean as ref and you…?

  22. Had a look around some other blogs.

    Le Grove – no report up. Still just a pre-match rant about transfer window inactivity.

    Online Gooner – report just gone up, somewhat churlish. And some of the comments have to be seen to be believed. Really unhappy people.

    ANR – Credit where it’s due. Report up – and praiseworthy (ish).

  23. And for those claiming we have never played like this before… I can think of Dortumnd and Tottenham away last season for starters.

  24. ZOON

    Not that I need to explain anything to you, but Tom and I are fine about most things, except the UA reviews and the contention of Refereeing bias.

    We disagree vehemently on the subject and have had many a ‘debate’.

    If Tom does reply I would suggest that he will again disagree with me.

    Take it from me the last thing Tom needs is your help. He’s been known to be very ‘Warrior’ like himself when the need arises.

  25. Pete those that claimed we’ve never played like this before either have never seen the Arsenal play or are liars… perhaps even both.

  26. I thought it was a good performance from the ref and credit also to Man City who played the game in a fair way. It looked a much more level field yesterday, so no great surprise to me that we won. The difference with the penalty (to some of our other shouts in recent matches) was that Monreal was running at top speed and so provoked an instant and unconsidered response from Kompany – and this in turn provoked a similar reaction from Dean.

  27. er gooneress

    most people agree that Dean was much better than normal yesterday

    Did he not let the game flow? Did he not get pretty much every decision right? He gave us freee kicks when they were fouls not when they werent , what more do you want?

    Even tony attwood thought looked ok

  28. madetolovemagic,

    You will have read comments stating that we should not get carried away because it was just one game. By bringing past games shows that the team did not just conjure this one from nowhere. In addition I think you must have watched our away game to Chelsea in October. In that whole game Chelsea had three shot on target, one a penalty, another a goal by their number 19, while a third was a hopeless shot from range. We gave away very little in that game but the difference was their shot conversion rate. In the Liverpool game the plan was similar having all players behind the ball. It was when Giroud forgot the plan that we conceded first goal. Their second goal came from a long added on time which naturally affect concentration levels otherwise we could have stolen 3 points in that game. In summary Arsenal’s approach in big games away from home this season has been to defend deep. it did not work at the Bridge and almost worked at Anfield but worked yesterday. Any comments must therefore be in context.

  29. Madetolovemagic – ‘most agree that Dean was much better than normal yesterday’ Dean’s normal I liken to Satan yesterday he was just a little devil.

  30. MadeToLoveMagic

    Dean was OKAY. No more.

    Yes he gave us a penalty he may not of on another day but getting a penalty decision right is hardly reason to put out the bunting now is it?

    The other KEY decision was Kompany and he got it wrong. He saw the foul by Kompany on Alexis and ignored it.

    (That was a KEY decision and could of made a big difference in a tense last 20 minutes.)

    He booked 3 Arsenal players for there 1st foul. 3 bookings for 5 fouls.

    (That put our players under incredible pressure to remain disciplined and could easily of resulted in us being down to 10 men had our boys made one slip)

    Very strict against Arsenal. Very lenient against City.

    How does such disparity in the brandishing of cards even suggest a ‘good’ refereeing performance?

    The fact is both teams made it a pretty easy game to Referee yet he still made some big mistakes.

  31. Made to Love magic.

    You can criticise Untold mate but actually it is more reflective of what I consider to be proper support.

    On the blog you usually frequent, after the game a number of the ‘throng’ were calling Ramsey names like ‘ramshit’. Giroud got his usual donkey taunts. All very childish and pathetic. As you seem a reasonable guy, why do you hang out with those clowns? You have another who has spent all morning abusing the club (Highbury Daze), with some eloquesnt language. The sooner you realise the motivation behind that blog and the ‘type’ of people that visit it, the sonner you willrealise the bollocks that gets written. Wenger is far more knowledgeable than any of the arrogant commentators on that blog.

    I always find it chirlish that people come on to Untols and ridicule fans that never waver from their support for the players, the manager and the club.

    We have enough crap piled on us by the media, it is a shame some of our fans want to do teh same thing.

  32. Tinalex

    Im not saying that we havent tried to set up this way before but yesterday it for whatever reason clicked..

    Im sure in a big part it was down to having a young tenacious player at dM. Arteta and flamini can not hack it in the big games as cover for our defense.

    but what ever it was that happened yesterday was different in the sense that it was complete. It was a complete synthesis of footballing ideals where everything worked. I suppose i was wrong in certain ways to discount the results leading up to this but i maintain that it was more of a sudden shift than ( as you seem to imply) something we have been working on for a while now. We may have attempted that formation and tactic before but utilising it properly and in a beautiful way ive not witnessed since the 2006 champions league run

  33. About Dean – I think Jambug pretty much sums it up.

    Enjoyable article, Tony – especially the title and the bits about the pundits. All adds to the pleasure in wallowing in yesterday’s great victory.

  34. Made to love magic
    No dean didn’t get all decisions correct. He failed to send kompany off on at least two occasions. He failed to protect our players too; kompany lunged into sanchez with a two footed challenge that ended with him lying on top of kompany. That tackle could easily have broken sanchez’s legs, but dean waved play on, to give us advantage as the ball had broken loose to Ramsey I think, and he never went back to caution kompany after the advantage failed to materialise. And finally, how can anyone explain 12 fouls three yellows versus 5 fouls and three yellows. Does that sound fair? Imo the reason dean may have looked okish yesterday is down to our boys, they never put a foot wrong all match. So dean could not punish them for things they didn’t do. Even then he tried to punish them for imaginary fouls, take Ramsey and Bellerin’s cards for example. It was a disciplined performance by the boys that ensured we weren’t robbed.

  35. Jambug , very strict against arsenal very lenient against city are yOU seriously for real man>? WOW

    And you say getting a penalty decision right isnt worth the bunting ?? Dude that was not a nailed on pen, it was a pen but many many refs other than Dean could have easily not given that but what-evs mate

  36. Al apart from that one Kompany incident it seems no one can think of anything bad dean did

    If you want to go back and analyse the yellows and see if they were applicable be my guest but i thought that Dean offered a surprising amount of protection to our team yesterday. He certainly offered city no more.

    er wasnt ramseys card for obstruction if my memory serves me correct?

  37. Al @10.46 – Agreed.

    Madetolovemagic – the idea that we should be happy with that Dean performance is laughable, the game and results were down to the manager and the team who were as Jambug said disciplined but again Dean just can’t help himself he still had to hand out cards for imaginary fouls to our players.

  38. In as much as it was disappointing to see Company not getting a deserved yellow for the penalty and another yellow in the second half, with hindsight we can relax in the knowledge that our win is not going to be attributed to the sending off. Imagine what will be the headlines had Company got send off early in the second half. The pundits and pressmen would be saying we won because of numerical advantage. The commentators on the channel I watched (Peter Drury and Jim Beglan or something like that) kept on saying that the last time we won at the Ethad was when City had a defender sent off early in the first half. Note that I rate Drury as a match commentator. So today the team is able to enjoy full credit because Mike Dean was being Mike Dean.

  39. My 4 yrs old daughter was sitting in my lap while the game was on, which is not a good idea, because I was so happy with the way we were playing, I was cuddling her harder as the game went on.
    I will not go into how we played because we were bloody good, also most of the what I have in mind has already mentioned. But what struck me most was that apart from LK’s challenge, we never made any so called dangerous challenges at all. The block’s that were made or the challenges that we made were thoughtful even Coqulain’s tackles [generally he is rash] were measured. This was a proper team effort because we came with a plan, not the “hammer & tong” stuff and that we executed the plan well. The 1st 10 mins of the 2nd half were a bit erratic and I thought, what the hell happened there!!!!

    We played the similar style against Bourissa D, so we can do it. Its just a matter of choice. Gary Neville say stuff which makes sense and I like to listen to his post-match analysis and that he admitted that he was proved wrong, to what he said about us prior to this match. That is man of him to say that. Souness was stuck for words. You could feel it in his voice, that he just could not believe what he saw and I thought that he was genuinely happy that we played so well.

    Now we he have a BIG problem, which is we have done it twice….which means that that we play against Hell sea and other strong teams, we will now expect this sort of performance.
    i have recorded this match, i hope to enjoy it again. not only for the win, but the way we played and its a good game to show kids as well. they can learn a lot.

  40. Can we please stop giving fuel to them aaa?
    I mean, just ignore their comments completely and just cherish this victory?

  41. Great comment on the radio from an ex player (cant remember who).

    He said that last season Arsenal only had two days to prepare for the City game. We had played away in the champions league, yet the TV people had decided we should play a midday kick off on Saturday. This gave the manager and his coaches no time to prepare for the man city game and to work on a game plan. He added that the players would not have had it in their legs to play the way they did yesterday. Therefore, comparing last seasons game with this is unfair, as Arsenal were at a disadvantage.

    This time we had plenty of time to prepare and practice. The players were fresh.

    The rise of the armchair Football EXPERT
    I appreciate that times have changed. We now have huge availability to live football, we are overdosed with pundits, we have fantasy football competitions, games consoles, 24 hour radio shows, social media and blogs etc. This has lead to a rise in self proclaimed football experts and critics. It seems nowadays that everyone is an expert. They are tactical geniuses, transfer negotiators, fitness specialists, sports scientists, financial planners and scouts. In fact, they are the ‘ultimate’ football manager. I am bemused by the fact that these ‘experts’ are not currently employed in a professional capacity within the game. After all, it isnt that difficult to manage a football club.

    Thsi notion that Wenger does not know what he is doing always makes me smile. The only manager in our time to navigate a premier league season unbeaten and have to take on the financial might of the two manchester clubs and Chelsea, with both hands tied behind his back. Fact.

    These ‘experts’ not only beleive they can do better than Wenger, they also beleive they would have been able to bridge the huge finacial gulf.Thats how bloody good they are. No idea why clubs all over Europe arent on a recruitment drive over here.

    Perhaps its because…….
    this is like someone doing a one day first aid course and then telling a heart surgeon how to operate.

  42. Probably our best performance for 4 years and this site is still full of people bleating about the ref’s performance.

    Who settles down to watch a game and concentrates on the ref’s performance before the teams.If we keep whinging about ref’s we look like victim’s and nobody likes a victim and this is reason Wenger doesn’t keep going on about it.

    We finish 3rd or 4th most seasons lately amd TBH that is about where we should be finishing based on performances so the ref’s cant be stitching us up to much.

  43. It was a noteworthy contest from the Arsenal team n we had it coming.The team have previously been let down by suicidal defending n lack of defensive cover.Thats where Coquelen has come out top drawer and Wenger’s trust repaid.You will agree with me that telepathic understanding btw Bellerin and Chamberlain has given us defensive cover in rightback while solidity of Koscielny and Carzola’s space awareness plus dribbling skills have been a real asset.Sanchez’s marauding accross the frontline and Giroud’s physique really give Arsenal an edge.The calm and assured play from mert,Monreal n Ospina minimises errors and gives the ball players the freedom to dribble through forests of panickstricken opposition.
    looks like Wenger/Bould partnership is paying off.

  44. For the record, it’s been 1 day since arsenal last defeated a top 4 team, who also qualified for the CL!

    As expected, the AAA would like us to believe that Arsenal has “never played this way” before, and that this is the type of football they have been asking for, and that Wenger has finally “learned”. In fact, yesterday’s display, although effective, was not our best display. We have played better football before, against the “top teams” but got stitched by the refs time and again.

    Like someone said, our performance was not very dissimilar from our game vs Chelsea at Stamford bridge. The major difference was that $ity did not kick us off the park, and we got 1 or 2 decisions, deservedly so, that normally wouldn’t have been given under current pgmol rule. Which brings us to what a lot of us have been saying: With (almost) level playing field, very few teams can match us.

  45. proudkev

    Well said as usual my friend.

    “Great comment on the radio from an ex player (cant remember who)”.

    It wasn’t Stewart Robson by any chance was it?

    Perhaps not 🙂

  46. ZOON

    Again I suggest you do some research.

    Although the Mantra of UA is support of Arsenal and Arsene Wenger, it has, from the outset prided itself on it’s ‘referee reviews’ and the highlighting of the massive disparities in the way we are refereed in comparison to others.

    Referees, and how they perform, is a fundamental part of UA so it is hardly surprising it is a subject that arises time and time again.

    Also, talking about it, even on a day when we have one, surely shows it is not all about ‘sour grapes’ just because we lost a match.

    I understand you may think it a bit ‘churlish’ to be moaning about a Referee after such a win, but personally I feel it is important not to let yet another Refereeing performance that could of cost us, go under the radar, just because we won.

    This site is founded on Refereeing assessments, if you don’t like that being talked about I think you may not enjoy this site very much.

  47. Great performance by the guys yesterday. Live in Spain but there are a few of us gooners out there and it’s been a while sincr everyone looked so relaxed watching a game. Very enjoyable! Kompany should have got his marching orders but I’m glad it was 11v11. This performance must be the standard from now on.

  48. @ mtlm

    I assume you are responding to my post, so I repeat

    – The major difference was that $ity did not kick us off the park, and we got 1 or 2 decisions, deservedly so, that normally wouldn’t have been given under current pgmol rule.-

    As you can see, there is nothing in the above statement about refs PROTECTING us. Only the deluded can even insinuate that with mike riley in charge!

    morinho sent out his thugs to kick and intimidate our players, while the ref stood by. I wont mention the fabregas penalty shout, or how Oscar stayed on the pitch for as long as he did; and ridiculous yellow cards issued to the likes of Chambers…

  49. The referee in the Chelsea game had a shocker. From the over the top tackle on Sanchez by Cahill to the Fabregas block with his hands in the penalty area. It was inept, no question.

    I don’t like Dean but I thought he had a good game yesterday. I get more annoyed by the inconsistency of our referees then anything else. Kompanys foul for the penalty was a definite booking and so too was the late tackle on Sanchez that lead to the Ramsey attempt. So if you applied the rules Kompany should have had three yellow cards. But I am glad he stayed on the pitch. Why? Because City going down to ten would have meant Wenger and the boys being discredited by some of our own fans and the media.

    The same fans who claimed Man City weren’t trying when we beat them 3-0 at Wembley. The same fans who said Bayern Munich weren’t trying when we beat them 2-0 in Germany (losing on away goals). The same fans who said we only won the FA Cup because it was Hull. The same fans who wanted Owen Coyle as Manager, Benteke and Balotelli as strikers. The same fans who blame every injury on the manager. The same fans who deny Chelsea and Man City invested £1 billion quid when we were trying to pay for the stadium. The same fans who claim Wengers success is down to George Grahams defence.

    I am still waiting for these fans to find something to discredit Wenger for yesterday. Perhaps we only won because Thierry Henry was in the studio?

  50. Jambug

    I think you may be right. I come and read things on here from time to time but rarely post. It always seems to be negative but in a different way to other sites.

    There seems to be no way to discuss football on here as views are firmly entrenched and not open to discussion. Will try to find somewhere else to talk.

  51. very good performance by arsenal ,the only down side is that we were always in a hurry to go forward dat we gave away possessions almost as soon as we got it.if only we will be patient enough to keep the ball by making the easiest passes to change our shape from defending to attacking instead of hurriedly making the forward passes. My best performers on the day were belerin, Monreal and coqelin for Cazola, we always knew he was that good

  52. It was a professional, accomplished performance. AW and the team deserve praise for that.
    I’m often critical of Arsene’s tactics, but surely even the fans who want the manager to leave have to appreciate the quality of yesterday’s performance. And if they cannot, then it is they who have the problem.
    Delighted for the players, fans and manager. Lets keep this going – heavy defeats to big sides often proved to be the difference between competing for the league and scraping 4th spot.
    We don’t lose our best players anymore, we are spending on top players and now we are playing as men rather than boys. Lots of reasons to believe the future looks bright for Arsenal.

  53. Something that struck me was how disjointed the commentary after the game was. It was as if they had to chuck out the script they had rehearsed and actually had to think about what they were going to say!

  54. What seems to amaze and astound UA bloggers about Dean’s performance is that he actually did what a normal, relatively fair referee should do for most of the game. This seems to happen so rarely that it is major news to some of us!
    Those who say that this is the first game that the Arsenal actually played the way they want them to are revealing their myopic, doom-coloured glass wearing attitudes. We have played more often than not like this but were facing teams who assaulted us,without some of our best players, all too often on poor pitches, and all too often with lackluster officiating. Isn’t it curious that we usually do very well when we get non-EPL referees handling our games?

  55. Mr Attwood, I would suggest you do a spot of research yourself. For all the innovations introduced by Herbert Chapman to Arsenal, and Football in general, the tradition to adopt uniform shirt Sleeve lengths, either Long or Short sleeve, had absolutely nothing to do with him

  56. MadeToLoveMagic

    “the differnce between that and the chelsea performance was so much more than the ref protecting us”

    Was it?

    Here’s a comparison of City and Chelseas statistics against us.












    Chelsea…..14 for 3 Yells
    City……..12 for 3 Yells






    we conceded nearly 20% less possession to Chelsea than we did to City

    We concede under half the shots to Chelsea than we did to City.

    We conceded just 2 corners to Chelsea but 16 to City.

    We won almost the identical amount of duels to both Chelsea and City.

    So, excluding the obvious goals, out of ALL the match statistics there where just TWO where we performed better against City than we did against Chelsea.

    Firstly the aerial duels, but this may or may not be down to the fact Giroud did not play.

    Secondly, although managing more shots against Chelsea than we did against City we failed to hit the target,

    So all in all statistics show the performance against Chelsea was better than or at least equal to the performance against City, except we didn’t have our shooting boots on with nil on target from 10 attempts, and Chelsea did, with 2 goals from 5 attempts.

    So could you show me where you get:

    “the differnce between that and the chelsea performance was so much more than the ref protecting us”

  57. I cant believe after a great win like yesterday we still have the same people coming here posting there same old (discredited) shit just to start a argument. I feel a bit sorry for them – these people must be the most miserable bastards going!

  58. During the chelsea game we were exposed time and time again, we dint close up the midfield like we did against city, we struggled with the pace and skill of chelsea. We looked shoddy in possession against chelsea, we didnt take our chances against chelsea when they were given..

    The reason chelsea had less chances than city against us is that Maureen sets his team out to defend first attack 2nd, Pellegrini doesnt.

    So regardless of the stats you show that says apart from the goals we were on a level footing with chelsea anyone who actually saw the game knows that they out matched us in every department..

    Yes the ref could have given us a little more, cahill should have gone no doubt but that is just one factor, not by any stretch the defining one

  59. Jammy J

    Im happy about yesterday

    what im complaining about is how people in here cant credit it to a sudden change in style and actual discipline shown by the team , they have to say “well its the first time the ref didnt let them kick us to bits” or some other statement similar

    Arsenal won yesterday because tactically we did what we had to do and this time it all clicked.. Im not saying we havent tried to go defensive before but we havent done it in that manner, right from the beginning and with supreme intelligence, all working for each other, no bombing full backs

  60. “So regardless of the stats you show that says apart from the goals we were on a level footing with chelsea anyone who actually saw the game knows that they out matched us in every department..”

    That is JUST your opinion. It is not my opinion, and what’s more I have the stats to back me up.

    You on the other hand do not.

    Try winning an argument in a court of law on the back of an opinion without statistics to back it up. You would be laughed out of court.

    Or are you basing your argument on the fact that your ‘opinion’ is better than my ‘opinion’ ?

  61. MadeToLoveMagic

    “….Im not saying we havent tried to go defensive before but we havent done it in that manner,”

    We restricted Chesea to:

    Less possession.

    Less shots.

    Less corners.

    You’re talking in riddles man.

  62. MadeToLoveMagic
    If we were exposed time and time again how come they only had 5 shots and we had 10? That looks like we exposed them more than they exposed us. Mourinho set his team out to defend and still conceded 10 shots, pretty poor compared to us (who supposedly can’t defend) only conceding 5.
    As Jambug says, Chelsea had their shooting boots on, we didn’t.

  63. Madetomagic your words to Jammy J do not reflect the summary from untolders which I am in no doubt you are fully aware.

    Is it because some of us don’t share your ‘opinion’ I don’t know if anyone told you this but we all have minds of our own and as such are more than entitled to our own opinion, even, if it’s differs from yours.

  64. Jambug
    Wrong Tom. Ha ha ha.

    Poor guy must be scratching his head thinking ‘what the hell did I do?’ 🙂

    Look , I know we’ve had some history but it would help if you read each post with an open mind , and sometimes check the avatar. Nor everyone has a colorful name like Jambug or Bootoome 🙂

    On the subject on the referee, since you are unable to drop the subject, I particularly enjoyed your comment from yesterday;

    ‘Those bookings will come back and bite us on the bum, you mark my words’

    I had , and they didn’t .
    So it appears you were WRONG about something , perhaps for the first time eh 🙂

    Also, I love how you and some others say how Dean had no choice but to give it ( the pen), because it was such an obvious penalty.
    Had he given it against Arsenal in identical sircumstances , you would have been screaming bloody murder . I know I would :), well I would defenetly call it soft at the very least.

    Here’s another quote from you.

    ‘Deans having an okay game except the two bookings’, which suggests that Dean’s performance was actually poor ,when you consider the bookings.
    The guy gave us the most controversial decision of the game and you are still unhappy with him – incredible!
    Or is it because of his past history with Arsenal ? Kind a like you reading my posts , a little bit maybe?

  65. The ref helped by being more balanced than usual, and having the guts to award a penalty against the home team.
    But our players had a plan, we stuck to it and played like men. There were no wide open spaces in midfield, no haphazard defending and we were strong but fair in the tackle. We haven’t played that way against the big teams in recent memory and it was refreshing.
    I don’t agree that the ref was the main difference – our setup was bang on yesterday, and the execution of the plan was even better.
    I think it was down to us, rather than Dean. But who cares? We won and it was long overdue!

  66. Dave Gilbert – the problem with posts like yours is that you don’t tell me where the innovation came from. OK, if I am wrong, I am wrong, but give me the origin of your assertion.

  67. With respect to the sub bench for ManCity being heated.

    Back when I was teaching weightlifting (and stretching was on the agenda), I ran across some research about stretching in the hot tub. The best stretching, was the kind you couldn’t do by yourself (PNF proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation). Next up was to hold a static stretch for significantly longer than 20 seconds. Doing stretches in the hot tub, was found to not be as good as doing the stretch in normal temperatures. And ballistic stretching tended to more damaging.

    My argument against heated sets for the subs, is that it would take them longer to get their metabolisms up to the required level, than people adequately dressed who had been on unheated seats.

  68. Oh, I brought this up yesterday, someone thought that Arsenal must be preparing for today. And there couldn’t be problems of a work permit nature, as this person was an EU citizen.

    It’s a little after lunch time in London. Still no article about Krystian Bielik (our white tailed eagle from Poland) joining Arsenal at I was guessing work permit problems. Is Arsenal going to wait until the end of the transfer window to announce this, or did something happen? Just curious.

  69. @Tony,
    I always thought from way back in Arsenal’s pre-war history that the captain decided whether short or long sleeve shirts would be worn.
    Mind you, in winter time with the tendency for players to wear gloves, it would appear sensible for long sleeve shirts to be the order of the day at all games.

  70. Halsey was in the news again.

    The headline relates to the spuds. Second place is our penalty.

    Halsey is showing colours, he is English referee, not a football referee.

    > Monreal knew what he was doing but with Kompany shaping himself to block,

    The laws say that there can be shoulder to shoulder contact with the ball within playing distance. This is hardly shoulder to shoulder, and the ball is not within playing distance. There is little chance for Monreal to knock Kompany down, and that hardly could have been the plan of Monreal anyway. Kompany has been caught flatfooted, and to allow Monreal to go by him is to allow a good chance to score. Halsey wants the big tough English league, where penalties are only given if you break the persons leg to keep him from scoring.

    Another quote from Halsey in the article

    > Overall, I thought Dean, who is one of the best referees in the Premier League alongside Mark Clattenburg, handled the game very well but there were a few yellow cards which he could have handled better.

    Halsey is wrong, if he thinks a referee can show as much bias as Dean can, is a good referee. The second half of the comment is nebulous. Too many cards? Not enough cards? Some cards were wrong? A few is nominally 3-7, there were 5 cards issued in the game. A few cards could have handled better nominally says ALL the cards could have been handled better.

    This idea that players are entitled to make contact is wrong. I got the ball first is not correct. I think the penalty was correct, and I think Kompany should have seen yellow for his foul on that penalty. But as Monreal didn’t have his leg broken by this challenge, I would grdugingly accept not getting the penalty if Kompany was to get a yellow for the challenge. That challenge well away from the penalty box, I can see as just a foul. In the penalty box, he (Kompany) has to be carded at a minimum.

  71. Had to laugh at the BBC. Radio commentary of 5 Live. Trevor Sinclair on 87 minutes, Man City can still get a draw out of this. MotD, Jonathon Pearce on 80 minutes, Man City could go on to get a draw or even win this. As for the analysis where they spent 5 minutes explaining that it shouldn’t have been a penalty because Nacho “went down too easily” and fiveminutes later were saying how in the West Ham game a player who stayed on his feet “should have gone down” in order to get a penalty. FFS

    And 5 live sports news headlines this morning.

    1 Andy Murray beat an unknown in the first round of a tennis tournament.
    2 There was limted overs cricket match
    3 A 5 minute discussion with Dennis Taylor about a snooker match
    4 Some talk about how Man City will need to win at Chelsea next week.

    The BBC take every opportunity to slag us off but when we do what they say we ought to do…………they completely ignore it.

    What planet are these people on?

  72. @ Jambug 12:45

    Awesome! Those stats say it best, but the AAA would have you believe otherwise. I remember Arsenal taking the game to chelsea, especially Wishere. Cesc was almost anonymou, playing uncharacteristically deep. Their plan was to catch us on a break, a cowardly move when playing at home. At least $ity was positive

  73. Penalty call to Arsenal: Clear penalty. No intention of playing the ball, takes out the run of Monreal. Those who disagree with the penalty call DO NOT KNOW the rules of football. End of. Well spotted though by Dean and correct call. Kompany should also been booked.

    Kompany should have been given a second yellow (=red) for the foul on Alexis prior to Ramsey’s shot early in the second half. The ref came back three times (Koscielny,Bellerin and Aguero) to give yellow cards after playing advantage, but in this case, probably the most obvious one, he chose not to. Big LET OFF and a WRONG decision for Man C that I feel VERY confident would have resulted in a different (and correct) outcome had it been done by Koscielny (already on a yellow card).

    In short: 2 important decisions to make. 1 spot on (penalty) and 1 wrong (no 2nd yellow to Kompany). But why is it that Mr. Dean got the easiest of the two wrong….? Probably just bad luck on Arsenal’s behalf.

    Come on Arsenal!!!

  74. Tom

    You said:

    “”Those bookings will come back and bite us on the bum, you mark my words’

    I had, and they didn’t .
    So it appears you were WRONG about something , perhaps for the first time eh””

    You don’t feel that was perhaps more down to the incredible self discipline of our players, committing just 5 fouls in the entire match, by any chance, as opposed to Deans leniency then?

    You said:

    “”Also, I love how you and some others say how Dean had no choice but to give it ( the pen), because it was such an obvious penalty.””

    Where did I say he had no choice? Don’t start making things up. This is what I said:

    Okay he gave us a penalty. But praising him for giving a penalty that was a nailed on penalty (despite MOTD’s protestations to the contrary) is faint praise indeed.

    You said:

    “Had he given it against Arsenal in identical sircumstances , you would have been screaming bloody murder . I know I would :), well I would defenetly call it soft at the very least”

    Now you’re telling me what I’m thinking ! Do me a favour. I agree I’ve seen them not given, especially for us, but it WAS a penalty and I would not of been screaming blue murder. Don’t put words in my mouth to suit your argument.

    Then you say:

    “”‘Deans having an okay game except the two bookings’, which suggests that Dean’s performance was actually poor ,when you consider the bookings.
    The guy gave us the most controversial decision of the game and you are still unhappy with him – incredible!
    Or is it because of his past history with Arsenal ? Kind a like you reading my posts , a little bit maybe?””

    I said his game was okay at HT. At that stage he had rightly given a penalty that I would not of expected him to, given his history. Hardly reason to party mind and please explain how it was the most contentious decision of the match?

    Surely failing to send Kompany off for two yellow card offences (Possibly the Penalty offence and the one he did get booked for), and one possible Red card offence on Alexis, was the most controversial decision he didn’t make.

    And you still haven’t answered how come we got 3 cards, all for a first offence, for just 5 fouls in the entire match. That is a joke. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before.

    And by the way, your accusation of me failing to ‘let it drop’ is a bit of a cheek considering that simple question is all I original asked. You did not answer so I asked again. You did not answer. So I asked again. You still haven’t answered. So I’ve asked again.

    Perhaps if you just explained away my simple question in the first place I would of ‘let it drop’

  75. Jambug

    The penalty decision was the only controversial decision of the game , period.

    Kompany’s indiscretions were never of sending of calibre

  76. Jambug

    Here’s the thing , this was the best performance by an Arsenal team in an important game for over four years, and yet you and others concentrate this much energy on Deans performance , which had absolutely no bearing on the game’s outcome.

    City fans who are complaining about the ref are even more pathetic still.
    Giroud scored a perfectly legal goal from a free kick nobody was contesting, really. So wipe away the penalty goal and we still win the game . Case closed, move on.

    There were so many positives about our performance yesterday that you could’ve written ten paragraphs on it, yet you’d still rather discuss the referee.


  77. Jambug

    Why bother? 🙂 Some people do not see or don’t want to see the obvious. Regarding yellow cards to fouls made. We are Arsenal. It’s as easy as that… 🙁

    From Sky Sports web site:
    Former referee DERMOT GALLAGHER’S VIEW: “I thought it was a penalty at the time and I’ve seen the footage since and nothing has changed my mind. Kompany realises that Monreal’s going to go around him and he’s put his knee out very subtly. It’s a penalty all day long. I don’t think anyone can defend that.”

  78. That was not a penalty Monreal went into Kompany’s Knee and shoulder and then wanted to kiss the grass afterwards! LOL

  79. One of the “news” write-ups today, said Arsenal is now firmly in 5th place.

    3 Southampton 22 21 42
    4 Man Utd 22 15 40
    5 Arsenal 22 14 39
    6 Tottenham 22 2 37
    7 West Ham 22 10 36

    Is that an accurate or reasonable statement?

    Arsenal has a goal difference of 14. We’ll guess that the standard deviation about 14 is some unknown multiplier time 3.75 (about the square root). So, differences in goal difference within something like 5-6 are likely not significant. Southampton is +21 (7 above 14), which may be different, West Ham is about the same at +10, Tottenham is different at +2. ManU is the same at 15.

    Arsenal has 39 points. We’ll guess the standard deviation is some unknown multiplier times 6.25 (about the square root). Point differences of 7-9 or less are probably not significant. On points, we might have to say that Liverpool is also about the same.

    On the basis of goal difference and points, there is no significant difference between ManU and Arsenal at this point in the season. Yes, if the season were to end today, the placing would be made on the basis of statistically insignificant differences. But that is sports. In the middle of the season, things are yet to happen, and insigificant differences should be discounted.

    On the above basis, the best statements are that:
    1 Arsenal is now currently tied for 4th, with Manchester United.
    2 Southampton, ManCity and Chelsea are above 4th.
    3 All the others are below 5th.

  80. Tom

    Because, despite being presented with fact after fact after fact, showing how badly we are treated by Referees, you still insist it not to be the case, and this despite the fact you NEVER present any evidence, what so ever, to back your contention.

    That is why.

    And why you continue to besmirch and attempt to discredit all the hard work done by Tony, Walter, et el without a shred of evidence to back yourself I will continue to call you out.

    So come up with some facts to back yourself. Simple.

    Like I do.

    Like Tony does.

    Like Walter does.

    Like Bootoomee does.

    Like proudkev does.

    Like AL does.


    And as for this statement:

    “”The penalty decision was the only controversial decision of the game , period.

    Kompany’s indiscretions were never of sending of calibre”

    If you believe that then you really are just fooling yourself.

    To suggest that Kompanys foul on Alexis was not at least deserving of a 2nd Yellow is quit honestly ridiculous.

  81. And of course does Andrew Crawshaw (sorry Andrew). See half time report.

    Facts, analysis, conclusions.

    It’s how it works. It’s about more than just opinions.

  82. We won the game due to getting the tactics spot on .We have to find a balance between attacking sensibly and going gun ho.Just hope wenger learns from this for the rest of the season.And for what its worth i thought the referee had a good game and got nearly all the decisions correct.

  83. Loving the confirmation bias available for all to read or see upon the telly.

    “First time in ages Arsenal have…yadda yadda yadda, blah blah blah…finally Vengarrgggghhhhh slaps on a tika-tactical masala…”

    I guess all these ginormous football brains missed quite a few football matches, many of them already listed above, in the recent period. Tottenham Away was the funniest game in years- Rozza’s rocket follows by 89 minutes of a red and white deeeeefensive drills. No counters with any pace either minus the then injured and the new signings, a classic performance.

    But apparently it never happened. neither did other results. Of course it is perfectly rational to state you’d like to have seen more of it, as the players themselves have said of their performances, but to try and write an alternative narrative and to try and stick to it no matter how big an arse it makes you look (look at Souness! Nuff said. Not a good look. Rangers on the CV too…*coughs*).

    I guess the AAAA show, spoon fed by the Murdoch funny papers, the show must go on! Never mind the football.

  84. People have rather short memories. We beat Dortmund comprehensively at home less than two months ago. Yes they are rubbish in the Bundesliga, but they’ve been excellent in the Champions League. So people need to stop all this rubbish about ‘the maturest perfomance in years’, ‘first win against a big team in years’ etc.

  85. Finsbury

    “I guess all these ginormous football brains missed quite a few football matches, many of them already listed above, in the recent period. Tottenham Away was the funniest game in years- Rozza’s rocket follows by 89 minutes of a red and white deeeeefensive drills.”

    I think that’s why I get frustrated with all this.

    There is no doubt there was something special about yesterdays performance, not least the simple fact we won, AND it was away at the Champions.

    But it’s this insinuation that we haven’t done similar it before. We have. Especially away in Europe.

    We have kept some very strong teams at arms length, and better.

    As Wenger said, not only have we had many players injured, disrupting our shape, we have rather blown a few plans out of the water by conceding so early on in games.

    It gets so frustrating. We cant just lose a game in the medias eyes. We are always, ‘humiliated’. We always ‘capitulate’. We are always ’embarrassed’.

    NO ! that is not always the case. Yes sometimes we are crap, but sometimes we just lose. Plain and simple. Sometimes we are a bit unlucky. Sometimes we are robbed. But Oh NO we cant have that can we.

    That’s why I highlighted the Chelsea game. I don’t care what anyone says we deserved something out of that game and the stats show that.

  86. I happened to read the Sun Newspaper today, only because I was waiting for a haircut.I could not believe what that wanker Steve Howard said in his match report.He hates Arsenal and hates AW even more.It was a utter disgrace.He ended up saying” At the end Wenger came over all coy and fluttering his eyelashes on TV, when he was asked had he orchestrated some masterplan.Though of course you could see that he believed he had”.I have emailed him to tell him some polite home truths.
    Mr.Gary Neville, may I suggest you put into practice what you preach!.Starting with the England team, that you coach.It was also a total disgrace in the World Cup.Rant over.

  87. Jambug

    By my admittedly insignificant understanding propaganda works simply through the mechanism of banal repetition 😉

  88. It’s strange that it’s only man city and aaa’s who think it was not a penalty and Kompany should not have had more than one yellow card.

  89. Of our yellow cards, I would say Koscielny’s in the 3rd (?) minute was deserved. It was a professional foul as he was on the wrong angle and was going to be beaten to the ball by a country mile. As for Ramsey’s and Bellerin’s, hard to know what Dean was thinking. Fouls, yes, but yellows???

    As for Kompany’s penalty. It was subtle but he stuck out his leg and Monreal caught his thigh. Being caught this high up accounts for why Nacho rotated horizontally as he fell. It was a close thing because had he caught any more of Kompany’s leg then the rotation would have been more vertically and would have changed his direction more. It was a penalty despite Kompany’s protestations.

  90. MadeToLoveMagic
    January 19, 2015 at 10:09 am

    Despite several digs at Wenger I’m glad that you acknowledge ‘supreme intelligence’ in the way his team played. There are a few who claim that 4 years ago is when we should have played this way. 4 weeks ago we didn’t have many players available. The bench alone was quite remarkable on Sunday.

    Do not take anything away from Wenger when it comes to playing the game. He is a master tactician in honest football. There are no peers in his league yet. Arsenal are in an artificial position forced by cheating officials. Despite it all, I still believe that Arsenal can win the league. It will be a lesson in how to live an honest life & succeed despite the evils that try to change ones path.

    The idiot ZOON has a place to play in the traffic.

    Jambug is a good passionate Arsenal supporter (now there’s a word that is misused so often). His support is as it says on the Title -Supporting the Team the Club & the Manager.

  91. Tom – you are content with your beliefs.
    My conclusion of what I saw in the game is Dean awarded the penalty correctly. He was wrong not to book Kompany and he was wrong not to send him off. There were many ‘bookings’ that were incorrect and Dean is a cheat. Arsenal played well & for the first time this season we had a good bench.

  92. When Arsenal plays as a team, they usually succeed, we have all seen this type of performance before. I just wish we would do it every game. This does not mean we would win every game, but more likely that we would not lose as many.

    I think this team that played ManC should now get a run of games(bar the FA cup), make the others impress in training to get back in the team. There has been to much of players playing because they are expected to, but there should be none of that anymore, make them fight. To be “dropped” for one or two games is no disgrace.

    Players also have personal problems that WILL affect their daily life and the football too, there are not robots running on batteries( well we may have to inspect Alexis closely:( ), and they need the occasional rest, mental and physical.

    This is another AW (super) team in the making, the signs have been there for a while now.

  93. Va Cong
    January 19, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    Dean then went to get his card out of his back pocket & could not resist the mobile vibrations of the call from A Cole so left it (advantage). He conveniently forgot to go back for the booking (twice for Man City players). ;0 ;0

  94. What silence ? ‘They ‘ are still bleating incessantly , those stupid mutton heads .
    But am hoping that the slaughtering they are getting at the hands(keyboards )of the AKBs will eventually result in the silence of the lambs.
    One could be led to believe that we lost ,from all those complaints .Shhesh !

  95. On the kompany issue. Firstly the sending off rule was to punish defenders who deliberately stopped an opponent when through on goal, the old professional foul.
    Kompany did exactly that. Imagine he had been facing his own goal and it was a trip not a block and it was Sanchez not Monreal then 99% of Refs would have given a straight Red as no other defender was anywhere near enough to prevent a shot on goal.
    To make things worse he had already given Kos a booking for the same foul earlier so even if he thought it wasn’t a clear goal scoring opportunity then a yellow would still be the minimum.As we know Kompany did get booked later and made several rash challenges and also should have booked for descent.
    Also his cousin Fer nan Dean e o racked up numerous fouls after his booking. One of them deliberately stopping a promising counter attack.
    Sometimes after a great result we tend to be kind to refs but im sorry I think he was poor.
    As for the myth that Arsene had somehow listen to the whingers and had played a system not used in 10 years well that’s just clutching at straws by those who’s faces are filled with egg and if were man enough would have stomachs groaning with humble pie

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