Arsenal – West Ham United 3-0, a good win against a stubborn team

By Walter Broeckx

A lot of changes for this match compared to our last game at Manchester United. Some expected some maybe not.

David Ospina starting in goal is not a real surprise.  Calum Chambers starting at right back is maybe also understandable because young Hector Bellerin having played a lot of games recently.

Santi Cazorla got some well deserved rest and Aaron Ramsey came in his place. Up front we see Theo Walcott taking the place of the injured Oxlade-Chamberlain and Olivier Giroud starting in the place of Danny Welbeck.

Team that started : Ospina, Chambers, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Coquelin, Ramsey, Walcott, Ozil, Alexis, Giroud. On the bench we had :  Szczesny, Gibbs, Bellerin, Flamini, Cazorla, Welbeck, Akpom.

West Ham trying to apply a high pressure high up and all over the field from the start. But a fine passing move brings Theo free in front of the keeper but sees him hacked down but well… as usual the ref sees nothing in it. That was a clear penalty and as it was the last defender should have been a rec card within 4 minutes.  Typical Foy messing up in the penalty area.

Lots of possession for Arsenal against West Ham that now defended with all 1 players deep in their half. Not many chances for Arsenal for now. A few half chances and a good header from Alexis but an equally good safe from the keeper. A free kick from Özil causing a few dangerous moments in front of the West Ham goal but nobody could pull the trigger. Out of the blue then the first attack from West Ham when a player escaped on the right hand side of our defence but Ospina could push the resulting shot from Nolan away.

A decent attack then but the shot from Giroud ended up in the side net. Another fine attack and Chambers with a cross but the ball came at knee height for Ramsey and so the speed was out of the ball and the keeper could save it.  Still 0-0 after half an hour.


Walcott send away by Ramsey but his shot was straight at the keeper. Meanwhile Alexis over hitting his crosses most of the time. Some good work on the right flank ending up with a cross to Alexis whose shot is saved. In the next attack Alexis handled the ball and he got a yellow card. Not much to argue about that.

Sakho then suddenly away but Per stuck a foot against it. From the resulting corner Arsenal break but again enough West Ham defenders around to stop the Arsenal efforts.  Theo rightly being called back from offside when Giroud blocked a clearance.  Seconds later Özil with a shot and the rebound fell to Theo who slipped and shot over.

We had enough chances in the first half but our finishing letting us down and the ref …….. right when I was typing this another good attack over Özil, Ramsey ending up with a a fierce shot from Giroud that ended up in the top corner of the goal. Unstoppable for the keeper. Finally!

So we did get our reward with a goal in the last minute of the first half. Completely deserved! 1-0 to the Arsenal after 45 minutes.

Arsenal with some early attacks in the second half but the first moment of not was when Sakho  bundled over Ospina and caught him with the knee on the head. Not really intentional but a clear foul on the keeper.  West Ham showing some will to go forward in the opening minutes of the second half.  And the Arsenal passing not as good in this stage.  Mertesacker with an excellent block before West Ham can have a shot on goal. Meanwhile Foy looking injured and …. Taylor warming up.

A few corners to West Ham and Jarvis shooting over.  And then Taylor came on the field in the place of the injured Foy. Still just more than half an hour to go.

The game now opening up. A dangerous Arsenal attack is followed by a dangerous West Ham attack but the cross from Song goes over. A good combination over the left flank but Özil was offside. Welbeck came in the place of Alexis after 65 minutes.  Taylor penalising Theo for being an Arsenal player on the pitch.

An attack with several shooting options but Özil passed it to Theo who gave it to Ramsey but his volley went wide. Welbeck waiting a bit too long to give the pass and then over hits it.  After 71 minutes Santi Cazorla came in the place of Walcott.

And another attack from Arsenal ends up with an offside, this time Monreal. A bit of over elaborating at times it seems. Cazorla being pushed against another West Ham player and getting a foul against him. Yes, this is Taylor.  Some replays so I missed a foul from Sakho for which he got booked. An elbow signalled by the assistant.  A kick in the stomach of Giroud goes unpunished.  Collins with a last ditch attempt before Ramsey can pull the trigger. From the throw in the ball goes to Giroud who lets it go to Ramsey, Ramsey in to Giroud back to Ramsey and Aaron with the oh so important 2-0 after 81 minutes.

After that Flamini comes on for Özil. A great attack on the left with Santi very much involved. Again a good chip from Giroud back to Santi who squares it on front of the goal and Flamini with his first touch can walk it over the line.  3-0 to the Arsenal after 84 minutes.

Welbeck almost with a 4th but a defender just could divert it in corner. Arsenal now taking the foot of the pedal. The match was won. Welbeck the one with the most desire to go for a 4th goal. Coquelin with the desire to make sure that West Ham would not score with an amazing well timed tackle.  Welbeck with a good header but the keeper could save it.

A good win against a team that came to defend and tried to prevent a high score line. We had to be patient and attentive. Giroud showing his worth again with a good taken goal, an assist and an pre-assist.






83 Replies to “Arsenal – West Ham United 3-0, a good win against a stubborn team”

  1. What a quick report!!

    I have not yet watched the match, was listening on Arsenal Player. Looking forward to watching it later.

    Excellent win, three valuable points and from what I heard, some lovely football. Well done the team!!

  2. What if!

    What if Wilshere was not hacked….what if.

    Looking at Ramsey scoring his 7th goal of the season. What have they made of the career of this young player.

    What if…

  3. Great report Walter! Those were some amazing goals with great team play! Only 1 team in the PL can score like that and it’s that wonderful football that has made Arsenal a global team!

  4. Good performance. Chambers on the right hand side was giving as much as he was getting. Ramsey looks like he’s back. Giroud involved in everything today and motm. Sanchez and Ozil heavily involved too but ‘unfortunately’ for them today not directly leading to the goal, but still influential. All our subs looking very lively….

    Amazing tackling from Coquelin, again. Walter, I know you deserve credit for ‘introducing’ us to Bellerin’s talent. Can I also take credit for ‘introducing’ Coquelin’s talent; I used to go on and on about how good this boy was, albeit to my friend only, and not on here so can’t prove it 🙂 But what a player.

  5. Jerry

    …..and why we on Untold love them so much, and are more forgiving of there foibles than most.

  6. Arsenal are a one man team (Arsene Wenger).

    We now have 19 players who have scored (across all competitions), 9 of which have 1 goal.

    Alexis Sánchez . . . . .3 . .0 . .1 . .13 . .1 . .19
    Olivier Giroud . . . . .0 . .1 . .2 . .11 . .0 . .14
    Santiago Cazorla . . . .0 . .1 . .0 . . 7 . .0 . . 8
    Danny Welbeck . . . . . 3 . .0 . .1 . . 4 . .0 . . 8
    Aaron Ramsey . . . . . .2 . .1 . .0 . . 4 . .0 . . 7
    Mesut Özil . . . . . . .0 . .0 . .1 . . 3 . .0 . . 4
    Laurent Koscielny . . . 0 . .0 . .0 . . 3 . .0 . . 3
    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain 2 . .0 . .0 . . 1 . .0 . . 3
    Tomas Rosicky . . . . . 0 . .0 . .1 . . 2 . .0 . . 3
    Theo Walcott . . . . . .0 . .0 . .1 . . 2 . .0 . . 3
    Mikel Arteta . . . . . .1 . .0 . .0 . . 0 . .0 . . 1
    Hector Bellerin . . . . 0 . .0 . .0 . . 1 . .0 . . 1
    Calum Chambers . . . . .0 . .0 . .0 . . 1 . .0 . . 1
    Mathieu Debuchy . . . . 0 . .0 . .0 . . 1 . .0 . . 1
    Mathieu Flamini . . . . 0 . .0 . .0 . . 1 . .0 . . 1
    Kieran Gibbs . . . . . .1 . .0 . .0 . . 0 . .0 . . 1
    Per Mertesacker . . . . 0 . .0 . .1 . . 0 . .0 . . 1
    Nacho Monreal . . . . . 0 . .0 . .1 . . 0 . .0 . . 1
    Jack Wilshere . . . . . 0 . .0 . .0 . . 1 . .0 . . 1

  7. Haven’t seen the game either, but sounds like a thoroughly deserved three points once we found our shooting boots, glad to see Ramsey back on the scoresheet. As you say, a dogged opponent. Sounds like normal service resumed with the pgmol, but even Taylor couldn’t halt the inevitable once we got into our stride. What happened to Foy? Seems like a few refs getting injured, maybe not surprising with the modern day pace of the game,
    Well done Wenger and the team, the pressure is now on others.

  8. good win today 🙂
    what happened with the refereeing today.!?? I have never ever seen a referee getting substituted. I had a big scare when I saw Riley’s Best friend Anthony Taylor coming.

  9. WOO HOO , HOO ! So very well done the boys ! Am hoping for a few upsets tomorrow to make it a real good weekend.
    Up the Gunners !

  10. Walter,
    Thanks for the confirmation of the fourth minute Theo penalty, it was how I saw it and with no replay shown obviously another Foy bottled decision. Good team performance with three excellent team goals.


  11. Good report. No chance i could write one up that quick

    Excellent result.

    I’ve become pretty irrational (and maybe wimpy) about matches I can’t watch and try to keep away from updates till end. Was failing at that today, and checking everything every few minutes, until Taylor came on.

    That, on top of the obligatory non awarding of a penalty, gave me a bad feeling so went away and smoked some cigarettes.
    Whoa, the good feeling to then find out the final score!

    Sounds like watching the highlights will be good. Potential now for this to turn into an exceptional weekend for the team, and us lot.

  12. Gord

    Great post.

    To be fair, that ‘one man team’ crap did stop a while ago, but as we all know, it never should of started.

    But that’s the thing with our friends in the media. They spew bullshit week after week until it is absolutely insane to continue to do so…..then NOTHING.

    No apology. No contrition. Not a word.

    That’s why I love our friends in the media so much.

  13. Great and quick report, Walter. 🙂

    My biggest scare was when Taylor was smiling to Welbeck and Cazorla while they were all warming up. It was like: “It’s easy for you to beat these poor bastards but you’ll see when I enter the pitch!”

    Sadly for him and Riley, he couldn’t turn the game around.

  14. Well done lads!

    Tough match against the ‘ammers’.

    You put a sweet smile on the face of the Bear. Now for a bit more celebrations with my favourite honey. Yeaaaaaaaaaaa!

  15. The latest AAA victim by the way is Theo. He isn’t fit, is only a super sub, can’t score goals, doesn’t defend, is lazy, asks too much money and must be sold. If AW can’t see this, he is a fool. Obviously. Until Theo scores in a couple of weeks or so that is, as he gets fitter and stronger….in which case AW will be a fool for not giving him a contract and dilly dallying till the last minute.

  16. The most commonly statement I hear associated with Giroud “but he isn’t a world class striker” I am not sure what world class actually means, or who is this mythical striker, perhaps Bobby Charlton, gert muller, pele or Thierry…..but whatever giroud is or is not, he does an amazing job for us, can think of few around now who would do better in terms of goals, assists, defending, team ethic, work ethic, physical and mental strength. Yes, he had a stinker against Monaco, shit happens, but he has shown he can comeback from such things.
    Harry Kane is the medias man of the moment, he is having a good season, but let’s see how he does in his second season as defenders work out ways of stopping him.

  17. On Theo

    Missing chances is much better than not getting any.

    Sounds a pretty good performance to me.

    RVP always took 3/4 or 5 games to get his radar homed in.

    I think it was Aguaro they said is similar.

    Sounds like Theo had a pretty good game to me.

  18. Arvind
    🙂 Must be really tough being an AAA; critising one player heavily in one breath then praising the same player in the next.

  19. Usama

    I tried looking in the Google cache for old BBC pages, and at, and I don’t see data for Podolski or Sanogo this season.

  20. A good win and puts us in a good position and to hopefully enjoy rest of results to come. Only recently found this site but so pleased as feel I am with fellow supporters who actually support our team, which is more than another well known site on whom many seem to want Arsenal to lose so that Wenger will go.

  21. @Gord
    Podolski scored against Galatasaray and Anderlecht in UEFA CL.
    Sanogo scored against Dortmund in UEFA CL

  22. Thanks Al and Usama.

    Sanogo also has a FA Cup goal, and one of the games Podolski scored in, he got a brace. Hence, another 4 goals (3 CL, 1 FA Cup) to the totals.

  23. Walter,
    When Taylor came on, did he immediately yellow card an Arsenal player for Foy’s injury?

  24. Give Theo time…. Hez not had enough time play with Alexis up top.

    Earlier it was draw defenders down and release Theo. But now its go at them with Alexis Ozil Ramsey…so its natural for Theo to take time to settle. Give him time to evolve….

  25. ARSENAL 13

    I have no worries about Theo.

    I have a feeling a fresh and raring to go Theo is going to play a massive part in our run in.

  26. Gord
    Sanogo did not score for us in the FA Cup- he scored for Crystal Palace. The total of four goals is, however, correct. All were in the Champions League. Podolski’s goal against Anderlecht, brace against Gala, and Sanogo’s goal against Dortmund.

    What a game, by the way?! This game was the closest we got to emulating the Wengerball of 2013-14- neat passing, the lovely little triangles and the trademark Giroud flicks. Our games this season have been quite different from the last- less possession, more counter-attacking and better conversion from set-pieces. I am not, in anyway, casting aspersions on our recent run of good form. But this was absolutely lovely to watch!

  27. City Penalty ?

    What a joke. I was happy enough to see City lose but….WTF ?

    If that wasn’t a penalty I don’t know what is.

  28. Good report Walter.
    Giroud showing his worth indeed. A MOTM performance from the Franchman . Is there a better player in all of football with his flick- ons? Probably not.

    Another standout performer was Koscielny, who along with Monreal , easily constitutes the best one half of any back four in the league , perhaps even Europe. The same can’t be said about Chambers and Mertesacker unfortunately. Especially Chambers , who gets caught out on defense time and again , losing the site of his winger three times in the first thirty minutes alone.

    Walcott should’ve had a penalty, but he also needs to be more decisive in front of goal. He’s still working on his sharpness which is quite understandable , but he still continues to struggle on defense. He looks uncertain what his role is and at times he looks confused.

    On two occasions Arsenal broke away at speed , he was nowhere near the front of the play, which is frustrating because that’s where he’s at his most dangerous.

    Positive performance with a priceless win , that should go nicely towards ensuring a top three finish , which is quite good because top four might not be good enough for much longer , with the PL sides struggling in Europe.

    Perhaps top two?
    Man City just lost to Burlney , with Zabaleta denied a penalty in the dying minutes for a point.

  29. More sweet….Hahahahahahahaha

    Man city only one point away now.

    Can this week get any better. What say South Hampton???….

  30. And, we’re now 1 point away from the second place. Burnley just did us a favor and beat the Mancs.

  31. The league table now looks…..interesting.
    There must be something wrong at City, quality players, but they seem well off the pace.
    Their manager is surely a dead man walking unless something freakish happens at Barca.

  32. jambug,

    I’m afraid I’ll disagree on the penalty. Zabaleta went down the moment he realized he’d lost the ball. His feet were already bending by the time the tackle came in.

  33. Trouble is every time a decision goes against him Peligrini he doesn’t run up and down the touch line like a demented chicken !! he’s a nice guy.

    So sad that no matter where he goes the abhorrent antics of Mourhino, aligned to spending 100’s of millions of pounds, seems to bring him success.

    No wonder all around the World, apart from our media of course, he is hated for the prick he is.

  34. Decisions like that are always about opinion but I thought it was a stonewaller.

    Anyway, that now makes 2nd a distinct possibility.

  35. Don’t know whether to celebrate City’s loss or what, as that means it’s almost certain the odious one will win the title. But nice to see the gap between us and city down to a point. Lets hope Southampton can pull it off at the chavs to make this really interesting.

  36. Jambug

    Me too, I really want him to lose it. Maybe he will, and by then maybe we will be there? Where is Menace?

  37. What was everybody’s view on Ozil today, I thought he had a great game but some on Facebook seem to think he was poor

  38. If you wish to watch live Arsenal games try the ‘Ronaldo 7’ site.

    The picture quality is excellent, as always there is a bit of fiddling around but nothing too serious.

    This is a free site and shows a lot of the major games (today’s Arsenal game included).

    Another site is First Row, picture a bit fuzzy, but better than an audio commentary.

    Good luck !!!!

  39. Yassin,

    I will record the MOTD later and get a photo off it. Most of the replays were from the defender’s side, which made them inconclusive, but the one from behind showed how Zabaleta was going down before the defender’s leg made contact with his.

  40. @Swales1968,

    He was the best player in the first half, but when Giroud scored, he was on a high and stole the MOTM.
    Ozil only problem is he think a lot, and calculate what will happen next and next and on…. He should ease hiself, still he was awesome in the game, but when in box he took the wrong decision. Still the ball which everyone talks about when he played the ball to Walcot instead of shooting/passing to Ramsey or Giroud. This attack Started of a genius pass from him to Welbeck. He is doing well, and stronger and more brave on the ball. Through time he will become awesome

  41. Thanks in advance Florian.

    I kept on searching for a link but there is nothing on the net.

  42. Just 2 game short(6 pt) of Chel$ now and 1 pt off Manc.
    Hope Chel$ slip up like Manc did today.

  43. Don’t forget that Chelsea have a game in hand. Se cond is a distinct possibility now providing we keep up our good run. Next home game is Liverpool.


  44. Andrew,

    On paper $ity are still favorites for second place, but they can’t afford any more slip-ups. If they win at home and draw away they come a comfortable second. They only have 2 “grade A difficulty” matches, with Manure and the Totts, both away. That is actually marginally less than us, we have Liverpool and Cheatski at home, and Manu away. Even if we draw with Liverpool and lose the other 2, we are in a good position to finish third. 74 points for us is a realistic target. If we win all the home games but Cheatski, that makes 78 points, which gives us a shot at second. Now, I did assume that we lose the game with Manure, in the good tradition of the PGMOB, although given the recent trends that is no longer a given. The best position that we can be in would be to have 4+ points over them by the second-last match day, when we play them, so the pressure is on them and not us, so the run of results to that match will actually be of the utmost importance. 4 wins out of the next 7 matches is perfectly doable, 5 is possible, 6 would all but get us out of the woods as far as 3rd is concerned.

    Arsenal – 54 ManU – 53 ManCity – 58
    West Ham 3 57 Tiny Totts 3 56 Burnley (A) 0 58
    Newcastle (A) 3 60 Liverpool (A) 0 56 WBA 3 61
    Liverpool 1 61 Aston Villa 3 59 Crystal Palace (A) 1 62
    Burnley (A) 3 64 ManCity 0 59 ManU (A) 3 65
    Sunderland 3 67 Chelsea (A) 0 59 West Ham 1 66
    Chelsea 0 67 Everton (A) 1 60 Aston Villa 3 69
    Hull (A) 3 70 WBA 3 63 Tiny Totts (A) 3 72
    Swansea 1 71 Crystal Palace (A) 1 64 QPR 1 73
    ManU (A) 0 71 Arsenal 3 67 Swansea (A) 1 74
    WBA 3 74 Hull (A) 3 70 Southampton 3 77

  45. Thanks Florian,

    From what I see in the video, it looks like a definite penalty, unless the Burnley player touched the ball, which I think he did not. But I believe Zabaleta has to take the blame too as he started going down before the Burnley player touched him, which the Ref saw as a dive. Had he stayed on his feet, the Burnley play would have definitely taken him. That is what you take when you cheat.

  46. I think tomorrow game is so important in defining this season (Chelsea-Southampton). If they lose tomorrow, this will show they are struggeling mentally, then will they fall down?

    As for us, we should go on game by game, Monaco next, and we can do it. 3 goals is possible if we show up and play well, still we need luck too. If we do that, I think this will turn our season around to even better from whatbwe did today. Can we?

  47. Yassin,

    That’s exactly what I’m saying. The Burnley player didn’t touch the ball, Zabaleta was first to it. But he still had the option to take a little jump and continue pursuing the ball, which he didn’t do, and as such he stopped being in the position to play the ball.

  48. Agree, but still I believe it should have been a penalty, but am happy he didnt get it, why cheating? Why diving? I hate when someone do that. I didnt like when Sanchez handled the ball today.

  49. The BBC tried hard to find a twit who could talk down about Ozil, and found one.

    Mandy, I wonder if perhaps something like the flu or mononucleosis is going through ManCity.

  50. Does make you wonder Gord…..maybe they are kissing each other too much?
    They don’t seem to be playing for the manager, reports of issues between Kompany and other players….but we of all fans know to be wary of the truth in any such reports.
    Just cannot see how players of that quality have been getting such poor results, not even as if they are an unbalanced team.maybe some of them have lost a bit of hunger? Bac must wonder just what he has done, although 150 grand a week plus might comfort him, still he is a warrior of a player and cannot be happy with so few games

  51. I’m not looking to solve ManCity’s problems, but this might be a paper to look at:
    The Threat of Infectious Disease in Americans Returning from Operation Desert Storm
    New England Journal of Medicine
    1991; 324:859-864March 21, 1991DOI: 10.1056/NEJM199103213241229

    If it is some problem endemic to the Persian Gulf, Fat Sam may not have done his team any good by going there for a break. And as Andrew and I have tried to report, there were a bunch of young Arsenal players at a tournament in the Persian Gulf not too long ago. If any of those players start suffering from lethargy (or similar), a person might consider quaranteeing them. Hate to see a medical problem flow through the first team.

  52. Earlier today, I ran across annoying headlines about Martin Keown saying something. Many hours later, I am starting to see more annoying articles about Martin Keown saying something. And it’s a different something.

    I think that Martin Keown should find a different occupation from pundit/muppet.

  53. Good game with lovely goals…sublime should be the word. I was actually impatient but the game made me hysterical but it was worth it

  54. Not only did WHam miss out on one player due to cutting his toe with a broken tea cup and another due to dislocating his shoulder in the gym (weightlifting apparently), we now learn the WHam goalkeeper had a dislocated finger from pre-game warmups. I’ve played goal, one of my little fingers doesn’t get completely straight. I ripped the attachment off the bone for a muscle, and it reattached in a manner that the finger doesn’t quite straighten. Sure, you can feel sorry for WHam, to me this is just information that might be useful in the future but isn’t now.

    I’ve got other things to do. I disagree with the statement that Arsenal have further cemented 3rd place. There are too many games left to talk about cementing things, when we have teams (to play their game in hand soon) that are 1, 3, 4, 5 points behind us. Arsenal will continue to work to finish as high as they can. And supporters should encourage them to do the best they can, and NOT bitch if they don’t do as well as they had hoped. All that has happened on March 14, is that ManCity has further opened the possibility we may be able to finish in second.

    We should support the team as best we can. We are capable of scoring goals, Monaco on Tuesday is possible. An important objective of playing Champion’s League again next year, seems very likely at this time. We still need to support the team to see this through by finishing as high as we can in the EPL. We have a good chance of getting to the FA Cup final, whether it is Reading or Bradford.

    There is lots to be positive about. Keep supporting the team.

    I have no idea if Chris Foy really got injured today, or this was just play acting to get the more anti-Arsenal Taylor into the game. I do think that Taylor could fall on hard times as Arsenal scored the final 2 goals on his watch.


  55. Gooner Murphy

    @ Cord 11 36 pm

    Regarding Martin Keown, the Expert Pundit that claimed on MOTD! Quote, “Chelsea were the best team he has ever seen play in the EPL” this from An X Arsenal player. However that doesn’t stop him being preposterous idiotic fool.

  56. Career Choices…
    A country preacher had a teenage son, and it was getting time the boy should give some thought to choosing a profession. Like many young men, the boy didn’t really know what he wanted to do, and he didn’t seem too concerned about it.

    One day, while the boy was away to school, his father decided to try an experiment. He went into the boy’s room and placed on his study table four objects:

    A bible, a silver dollar, a bottle of Jack Daniels, and a Playboy magazine.

    ‘I’ll just hide behind the door, the preacher said to himself, ‘and when he comes home from school this afternoon, I’ll see which object he picks up.’

    ‘If it’s the Bible, he’s going to be a preacher like me, and what a blessing that would be! ‘If he picks up the dollar, he’s going to be a business man, and that would be okay, too. ‘But, if he picks up the bottle, he’s going to be a no-good drunkard, and Lord, what a shame that would be. ‘And worst of all, if he picks up that magazine, he’s going to be a skirt-chasing bum.’

    The old man waited anxiously, and soon heard his son’s footsteps as he entered the house whistling and headed for his room.

    The boy tossed his books on the bed, and as he turned to leave the room, he spotted the objects on the table. With curiosity in his eye, he walked over to inspect them.

    Finally, he picked up the Bible and placed it under his arm.
    He picked up the Silver Dollar and dropped into his pocket.
    He uncorked the bottle and took a big drink while he admired this month’s centerfold.

    ‘Lord have mercy,’ the old preacher whispered in disgust, ‘He’s going to be the next president!’

  57. A Sporting Spirit…

    At one point during a game, the coach called one of his 7-year-old hockey players aside and asked, “Do you understand what cooperation is? What a team is?”

    The little boy nodded in the affirmative.

    “Do you understand that what matters is not whether we win or lose, but how we play together as a team?”

    The little boy nodded yes.

    “So,” the coach continued, “I’m sure you know, when a penalty is called, you shouldn’t argue, curse, attack the referee, or call him a pecker-head.”

    Do you understand all that?”

    Again the little boy nodded.

    He continued, “And when I call you off the ice so that another boy gets a chance to play, it’s not good sportsmanship to call your coach ‘a dumb a–hole’, is it?”

    Again the little boy nodded.

    “Good,” said the coach. “Now go over there and explain all that to your mother.”

  58. Theo is in a funk. He is returning from a very long injury which must play with his mind. He’s not the fan’s favourite any more and his place in the side (even on the bench) is far from certain. I don’t think he knows where exactly he fits at the moment. I can forgive his fluffed chances more than the fact that when we break he is often behind the full backs! More importantly (and as AW alluded to) he is prevaricating on a contract extension. We want him to stay so he needs to commit: after all we have just paid his wages for a whole season while he was in recovery. He should be in Wenger’s office Monday morning with his pen in his hand, no ifs, no buts.
    My next worry is Jack. Another brilliant talent who needs to wise up and recognise that his future is dependent on him taking his chance and not doing stupid things. Or does he want to spend the rest of his career showing off his tatoos rather than his medals? He can be Arsenal captain, or end up at West Ham, its up to him.

  59. On I enjoyed seeing the banner with 49 on it. You could even see it on Match of the Day at the start when they were going through the teams.

  60. Great win. Ozil does warrant an awful lot of invalid criticism. It’s as if everything he does has to be perfect. Really that is only expected of Messi. My only criticism of Ozil yesterday was he had a great chance to shoot and instead played an unnecessary pass. In the past we’ve been guilty of overplaying and that was one indication of that. Other than that it was a fabulous result and one that should boost morale before we go to Monaco. We can beat them 3-0, I believe!

  61. Foy is 53 – he shouldn’t be on the list at all! Didn’t the retirement age for Refs in PL used to be 48 unless they could prove ultra fitness? Foy, Dean, Dowd, Moss, Swarbrick, Atkinson, Mason, are totally unfit – Dean even said so half way through a game last season.

  62. Help for Foy – try not to get in the way of a great Arsenal move. Still puffing? Blow your whistle, take your time to book the evil Bellerin and get your breath back. Still puffing and can’t remember Riley’s orders, no probs. Taylor is right there to take control. What a pity we were so good yesterday!

  63. Blacksheep63

    I don’t think there’s another player in the league who appears more uncertain about what his defensive assignments are during games.

    Whether this is a result of lack of specific instructions from the manager( doubtful ), or Theo’s own indecisiveness , the end result for Walcott is that he weakens his case for being on the pitch.
    Breaking away at speed has always been a huge part of his game , so seeing him trailing those types of play is frustrating.

    His contract bargaining power is nowhere near what it was last time around when Arsenal simply couldn’t afford to let him go, after what seemed like a mass exodus of Arsenal star players.

    At the moment there are just to many weaknesses in his game he needs to improve on in a hurry , otherwise it is the club and Arsene Wenger who holds all the cards now.

  64. Tom

    I think you need to partition (vis a vis defence) Theo’s behavior to before and after the cruciate injury. That was a long time to not be playing.

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