Eduardo, Mad Maria, and Francis Coquelin

It was a jolly affair all round, and with quite a few unexpecteds.

You’ll know about Eduardo’s contribution: solid, modest, and a couple of chances.   It was just good to see him.

But whereas I expected the see an amazing display of through passing from the midfield for Eduardo to run onto, it didn’t happen.  Ramsey had a bugger of a game for the most part, and Wilshere and Merida didn’t quite get it right until well into the second half.

Strangely the star of the show was Francis Coquelin, the defensive midfielder who played full back.  He was quite exceptional – even more so because he was playing out of position.

Think of a player who was discovered playing in a lower league team in France, and you’ll think of a current full back – Coquelin comes from the same vintage.   First time we  saw him was in the first of the friendlies   and he looked good then.  Now he looks even better.  You want a defensive midfielder for next season?  Here’s one.

The other star – at least in second half – was Fran Merida who finally did make it happen right with a wonderful through pass for the first goal – Cesc eat your heart out.

And then there was Mad Maria of Malta.  I’ve no idea if that’s anything remotely like her name, but I used to hear her all the time at Highbury – a one woman chorus with her own chants and shouts of “All together now” which no one ever picks up.  You’ll know its her if you hear her – no one else has a voice like hers, and she uniquely sings about the Arsenal Girls (as in “Hello Hello”) and “Go go Arsenal”.

Since we decamped to the Ems I haven’t heard her, even though I wander around the upper tier with my silver membership.  But there she was loud and clear last night.

The Mad Maria tag came from a reader on the RedAction news group when I once enquired there if anyone knew about her.   Everyone seemed to have heard her, sometime or another.

And Maria – if you are reading – no offence.  Your support and determination to cheer on the boys are never in doubt.   I just don’t know how you keep it up.

3 Replies to “Eduardo, Mad Maria, and Francis Coquelin”

  1. the reason Wenger hasn’t splashed on a Winger is because we have Wilshere and Merida coming through. he tried to buy Robinho before he went to Madrid, and Di Maria before he went to Benfica (he looks off to Madrid as well). so its not like he hasn’t tried, but with Wilshere and Merida being as good as they are, and getting better all the time, along with Walcott, Nasri and Rosicky. i’m not so sure that a wide player is really needed, bring Traore back, and unless Elano is available at a decent price (how he doesnt get played is beyond me!?) a CB is a must! get rid of Gallas and Senderos (perminantly). talk of Chiellini is INSANE! he is amazing, one of the best in the world, and he LOVES juve, there is no way! Mexes is an option, Richards too. we have many CMS but they all play the same role, Yaya has been imense for Barca recently, i doubt he is coming. getting rid of Bendnter and giving Vela more opportunities is a must. and a new GK, almunia is decent, not great! Boruc from Celtic is great, Frey from Fiorentina is great. so i suggest Boruc/Frey, Mexes/Richards, Traore & Elano(maybe). get rid of Gallas and Senderos and Bendtner. and away we go, its not wholesale changes, but its the needed ones! Boruc/Frey, Sagna, Toure, Mexes/Richards, Clichy, Walcott, Diaby, Cesc, Rosicky, RvP, Ade. with Almunia, Eboue, Djourou, Song/Nordveit, Gibbs/Traore, Nasri, Denilson, Ramsey, Wilshere/Merida, Vela, Eduardo. you also have Simpson, Barazite, Randall, Bischoff, Fabianski, Coquelin. a few signings and confidence boost and away we go!! we can and will beat liverpool this weekend! 5 points is not that big a gap, dont we remember last season!

  2. What is the point of your fantasy list? You’ll only be disappointed when they fail to materialize. This team has the ability to do what is required to win trophies, they need to find the resources from within themselves rather than be looking to an outside saviour otherwise they are learning nothing and will continue to fall back into bad habits. Even as great as Henry and Wright were, they were nothing without the team. Arsenal has always been more about the collective, that is what they need to re-discover – that never say die team spirit.

  3. Like you, Tony, I loved to hear Maria shouting at Highbury and wondered where she’d got to, then just last week I happened to meet her. I was staggered to find that in the first season at the Ems she was the subject of a letter of complaint signed by (I think) 18 people sitting near her in her new seat. How pathetic and ridiculous is that? They haven’t shut her up though (yet).

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