Arsenal v Lyon: Here we go with the 8th Emirates Cup

By Bulldog Drummond

Arsène Wenger has revealed just about the most boring set of team news that there has ever been.  Everyone who went away came back safe.

Flamini has a little bit of a knock on his ankle but “I will decide if I involve him or not over the weekend,” said Mr W.  Apart from that I hope I can give 90 minutes to every player.

That means Arteta is fully fit, and presumably so is Rosicky, who was recklessly left out of the last article.  (Tony is on hands and knees begging your forgiveness.  Shall I offer it?  No, thought not).

Welbeck has not completely recovered, he is not in full training as yet, and won’t be available for three weeks at least.  Alexis is still looking after his mum, and Ooooospina is oooooverseas giving everyone who suggested that he was in Turkey, knowing winks.   Whatever happened to spotting players at airports?

So, Lyon.

I see one joker wrote in and asked why Arsenal were deliberately playing weak teams in the Emirates cup.  Not too sure about that.  Here’s where they finished last season in France.

Pld W D L F A G.D. Pts
PSG 38 24 11 3 83 36 +47 83
Lyon 38 22 9 7 72 33 +39 75
Monaco 38 20 11 7 51 26 +25 71
Marseilles 38 21 6 11 76 42 +34 69

Eight points behind the leaders but still in a healthy second place.

So far this pre-season I have found them playing three games.  The first was against FC Sion, and here is the full and unexpurgated commentary from the Sky Sports web site (check the link if you don’t believe me)  You have to read it backwards to get the full flavour of the report.

Match ends, FC Sion 0, Lyon 0.

Second Half ends, FC Sion 0, Lyon 0.
Second Half begins FC Sion 0, Lyon 0.
First Half ends, FC Sion 0, Lyon 0.
First Half begins.
FC Sion play in the Swiss SuperLeague and I remember them once creating a record for managers – something like 16 managers in 7 seasons.    Anyway, after all the enormous excitement brought by Sky Sports web site there must have been extra time or something because other sites have Sion winning 1-0.
Lyon then lost to PSV 0-2 but beat Milan 2-1.

As for today, here’s a lovely comment from one site: “All eyes will be on Wenger’s selection at goalkeeper.”  (ESPN).

Oh come on.  He’s going to play Cech in one game and Martinez in the other.  Oooooooooooospina is still oooooooooverseas.  Or did I say that already?

From those who know a thing or three about such matters, the word is that Clement Grenier started on the bench against Milan, so should play for Lyon, along with Claudio Beauvue—recently signed from Guingamp.

Predicted Lyon XI (4-3-3): Anthony Lopes; Christophe Jallet, Henri Bedimo, Lindsay Rose, Samuel Umtiti; Maxime Gonalons, Clement Grenier, Jordan Ferri; Nabil Fekir, Claudio Beauvue, Alexandre Lacazette

Alexandre Lacazette was the top goalscorer in Ligue 1 which of course means that some pundits have him down as our new signing.  This is on the basis that if one mentions everyone, then in the end one of the comments will possibly be right.

Or not.  

Anyway, I went a hunting to see how Lyon compare with Arsenal in terms of the basics and found this on

Team Shots/ goal Discip Y/R Possession percentage % Pass Success  Aerials Won Rating
1 Barcelona 16.4 67/3 69.7 88.2 10.3 7.54
2 Real Mad 18.1 85/3 57.9 86.3 13.2 7.50
3 Bayern M 17.4 37/2 70.2 87.5 18.9 7.46
4 Wolfsburg 15.3 44/1 54.9 79.6 27.6 7.38
5 Arsenal 16.1 68/2 56.7 83.8 19.8 7.38
6 Bayer Leverkusen 16.3 76/4 51.7 69.9 35.3 7.34
7 Paris SG 12.9 62/3 63.5 88.0 14.6 7.34
8 BorussiaMG 12.6 54/2 53.3 82.7 22.6 7.29
9 Man City 17.6 77/2 59.5 84.6 15.9 7.29
10 Chelsea 14.8 73/4 55.6 83.2 18.6 7.28
11 Marseille 15.2 64/6 58.0 83.8 15.8 7.26
12 Juventus 15.8 73/5 57.4 84.8 12.8 7.25
13 Atletic Mad 11.5 110/5 49.6 76.3 23.3 7.22
14 Valencia 11.6 103/9 50.4 77.8 18.8 7.21
15 Lazio 14.5 104/9 53.4 80.2 15.7 7.21
16 Man Utd 13.5 64/5 61.1 85.1 15.8 7.20
17 Lyon 13.7 64/1 58.3 83.4 13.2 7.18

Trouble is, having found that I am not sure what it shows, although it is interesting that in terms of the overall performance on this analysis Man U are not that far off Lyon.

But enough of such things.  What about our line up?

Well, before we get to that, just one extra bit of news from Jeorge Bird who seems to know everything, Crowley, Zelalem and Toral not involved with first-team, but Serge Gnabry and Krystian Bielik training with the first team.  Are we losing touch with Zelalem?


Debuchy Gabriel Mertersacker Monreal

Coquelin Santi Cazorla


Oxlade-Chamberlain Akpom  Walcott

No?  No, probably not.  I mean I found it hard enough to predict the line up in league games last season where there is a lot more information available.

Anyway, if you are going, have fun.  If not, it is on BT.  Now two years ago, BT ran an Emirates Cup show which largely consisted of ex footballers sneering at the competition, and showing their utter inability to add 2 + 1.

Untold launched one hell of a campaign against BT, when it looked like they were about to repeat the trick in 2014, after a series of pre-season anti-Arsenal adverts.

Whether it was our campaign and complaints or just coincidence, but almost overnight BT changed its tune and gave us a very positive coverage.  Let’s hope they remember the lesson they learned then.

Sorry the banner didn’t make it up today, but in case you missed it there is more information about where we are with the banner on the banner page…

The Untold Banner at the Emirates

Update: the original article referred to the programme today being on Sky – this was corrected at 12.05pm.  And the line up had no goalkeeper.  Fixed at 12.48.  Apologies.  Not quite back in the swing of things yet.

134 Replies to “Arsenal v Lyon: Here we go with the 8th Emirates Cup”

  1. The swiss team FC Sion have maybe another record
    They won their 13th Swiss Cup this year – one more than Arsenal….
    Which is no record by itself
    What maybe is one – but I don’t have means to check it – is that they have reached the final 13 times.
    So they have won 100 % of their 13 finals….
    And the state flag from Valais of which Sion is the capital has 13 stars on it….so when they got number 13 a few weeks ago legend say the whole state did not sleep that night.

    Apart from that, yep, the owner is special…he even sat on the bank a few times between trainer changes…..

  2. Meanwhile at the Emirates, 3 goals in 17 minutes. Wolfsburg 1 Villareal 2

  3. Couldn’t work out why BT Sprout kept on mentioning Man U in ads. About to fire off a rocket of complaint and then realised… BT are covering the Man U QUALIFYING round.

    Ho ho.

    I’ll let them have that.

  4. Arsenal team to play Lyon: Martinez, Debuchy, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs, Coquelin, Ramsey, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ozil, Iwobi, Giroud

    Arsenal subs: Cech, Gabriel, Monreal, Chambers, Bellerin, Hayden, Arteta, Cazorla, Reine-Adelaide, Walcott, Akpom

    Debuchy, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs,
    Coquelin, Ramsey,
    Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ozil, Iwobi,

  5. Interesting that Iwobi is being given another game.

    Wenger said of him

    “I like [Iwobi’s] team attitude, his movement. We have a game based on movement and speed, and he integrates that very well.
    “He has good power and is usually efficient – he scores goals a lot – and he had two good chances against Singapore. He missed them but usually he is capable of scoring.”

  6. Just getting the cob webs out, and only a sip of coffee. I see that the BBC still hasn’t figured out that we have preseason games. I will be reading Guardian’s version of the proceedings.

    The Guardian says that Lord Bendtner has come off the bench for Wolfsburg, and got good applause from audience.


  7. Please Iwobi and Hayden are in the squad but disappointed Wellington isn’t there.

  8. I’m fascinated that Jeff Adelaide is on the bench – there is a real belief in this guy in the club.

  9. I quite like the blue and gold but would prefer us to wear the red and white at the Wenger Stadium.

  10. I’m beginning to think that Girouds shirt should be panels held together with Velcro, so that the opposition CBs can’t get a proper grip of his shirt at corners…..

  11. Guardian is running at least a 3 minute delay, compared to the BBC.

    The BBC is running a commentary of this game, at the same time the WC2018Racist draw is running. Apparently the victim called bladder gave a good speech.

    The BBC is recruiting lots of twits to bitch about Giroud.

    Some news person thinks Szczesny is on the way to Roma. Roma is to play a friendly in Indonesia, and 5 members of the team were refused entry to Indonesia, and flew back to Rome. Gervinho was one of the 5. Oops, someone didn’t do some homework?


  12. Being pulled all over the place, but still to strong for the defender. Good goal

  13. Yep just like Untold has been saying, we need to get rid of this whole team and start again. Using bloody kids indeed.

    3-0 is ….


  14. All through the summer I have been writing this blog telling you this team is rubbish and needs a complete overhaul. We need at least three new players to make this team work.

    Wenger is the man I feel sorry for. Having to get up and down off his seat all the time. He’s getting on you know.

  15. Who opened the floodgates?

    It sounds like Giroud was lucky, but I’ll take it. How to go Ox and Iwobi!


  16. Time for an advert. Every summer I write a booklet for Arsenal Independent Supporters Club on an era from the club’s history. This year it is about Tom Whittaker who played for the club, was the most famous physio we ever had, and who managed the club after the second world war, winning 2 championships and the FA Cup.

    Just got my pre-publication copy today – if you join AISA at you get it free with your membership pack, and have a voice direct to the club.

    Just saying….

  17. GoingGoingGooner @ 5:03PM

    “I’ve loved what I’ve seen of the Ox, today!”

    Mrs J and I have just been saying the very same thing.

    This is what competition does. The Ox looks so focussed on getting a place in the side it hurts.

    Once or twice he tries a bit TOOOOOOOOOO hard, but that’s a minor quibble compared to the sheer Electricity of his performance.

    Powerful, fast, and now goals.

    This is beautiful to watch.

  18. What was Coquelin booked for?

    Para, I don’t think we are losing. But the BBC is following your lead, they are trying to find examples of when Arsenal have lost from big leads.


  19. @Jambug


    Just loved his run down the right side where he was fouled by Jenssen. Fought by 2 and was going by the third…

  20. Walter is going to be so fed up – he’s gone out for a meal with friends, and apologised that he couldn’t do a rolling news service about the game. I told him to go – its only a friendly.

    Sorry Walter.

    I’m going tomorrow – mind you knowing my luck it will be a 0-0.

  21. Jambug, there’s a few of them that are trying too hard at times. Gibbs, Debuchy and Ramsey. But they’ve also done some really good stuff as well.

  22. Some of the WC2018 draw is out. It looks like Canada gets the opportunity to lose to Belize. USA sent extradition papers to Trinidad for Warner, and the USA and Trinidad are in the same group of the draw for CONCACAF.
    If Canada gets through, their group has Mexico. Europe draw starts shortly.


  23. Martinez is a good shot stopper…might work on his distribution – quite a few of his thumps down pitch have been taken by the team in white.

  24. I just love the movements of our players and their confidence to try out things. PL beware.

  25. It would seem that Mr. Moss has missed a number of penalties…the Lyon defender has all but pulled Giroud’s sweater off of his back.

  26. Come on Gunners. Try to stop those counter attacks, and more goals in their net.


  27. Did I say I love this kit before!!….

    I’ll say that again…

    I lllaaaaavv this kit

  28. Walter is going to see the score somewhere, and we’ll be hearing (well, reading) from him before this night is out.

    It’s nice to see the positiveness of the comments today here (some of the BBC commentary isn’t).


  29. Predict tomorrow’s score anyone? I thought this was going to be the tougher game.

  30. Para, have you forgotten that tomorrow we play against a team with the greatest striker that ever lived!

  31. English commentators are sooooo boring. Arghhhh. They should listen to the commentators from 20 years ago to see how to do it.

  32. Please correct me if I’m wrong but this is my first time seeing the mexican wave at Stadium Wenger.

  33. Cech starts in goal, and possibly a stronger team than today? It could be ugly for Wolfsburg.

    World’s greatest striker? Has to be Lord Bendtner, the chubby (according to the news).

    Yes, turn on Alex Scott’s microphone.


  34. Neither BBC or Guardian mentioned anything about Coquelin. Touch of the flu?


  35. Even with Santi scoring, It’s got a bit too scrappy now. Having 2 new boys on the wings inhibits the game a bit too much.

  36. Santi Cazorla is my ‘Jack Bauer’ of this team….What a kick, what a goal.

  37. Akpom has some great individual skills but could perhaps link up better with his teammates.

  38. GGG,
    Akpom is an out and out CF.
    He doesn’t ‘share’ well but he does it more when he’s playing as CF.
    I think he’s desperate to get a goal!

  39. A13, yes.
    If they’re fighting for the winger role then Iwobi wins hands down, but the reverse is the case if it’s for CF.

  40. God knows how we are going to score enough goals to mount a serious challenge for the premier title unless we buy a world class striker.

  41. What on earth was that Scotland banner doing at The Emirates?
    Not complaining, but it looked so out of place.

  42. Tail Gunner, there is a supporters club Scotland Arsenal, which is officially recognised and so they can apply to have their banner up. I imagine people will be saying, when the Untold banner goes up next week “What is that Untold banner doing there?”

    IF they wanted to, Walter’s club, Belgium Arsenal, could apply and make a banner. I like the idea.

  43. Great game Arsenal!

    Looking at the Google News. Sports Mole also did a commentary, and they don’t seem to have an excitement for Arsenal. The entire game is down to a poor Lyon.

    Apparently Coquelin’s yellow card was for pulling back Fekir (by the shirt). How did Arteta fit in? I see Hayden subbed on at 80, how did he do?

    For those interested in WC2018, your European groups:

    Group A: Netherlands, France, Sweden, Bulgaria, Belarus, Luxembourg

    Group B: Portugal, Switzerland, Hungary, Faroe Islands, Latvia, Andorra

    Group C: Germany, Czech Republic, NORTHERN IRELAND, Norway, Azerbaijan, San Marino

    Group D: WALES, Austria, Serbia, Republic of Ireland, Moldova, Georgia,

    Group E: Romania, Denmark, Poland, Montenegro, Armenia, Kazakhstan

    Group F: ENGLAND, Slovakia, SCOTLAND, Malta, Lithuania, Slovenia

    Group G: Spain, Italy, Albania, Israel, Macedonia, Liechtenstein

    Group H: Belgium, Bosnia-Hercegovina, Greece, Estonia, Cyprus

    Group I : Croatia, Iceland, Ukraine, Turkey, Finland

  44. TailGunner

    Not having a go because I think you possibly didn’t think it through before you posted, but personally I love the banners/posters, whatever, from around the World.

    It’s a big World out there and the more we can entice into the Arsenal Family the better as far as I’m concerned.

  45. A very enjoyable and entertaining match with Lyon, a good side, comprehensively demolished – in a most artistic manner!

    It was very pleasing to see some of the young players acquitting themselves well – looks like we have some more stars on the conveyor belt.

    Well done the team & manager!

  46. Gord, Hayden did OK. Not on for long enough to say much more. A few good tackles/interceptions/passes but nothing especially noteworthy.

  47. What a demolition it was, faboulous. Hopefully great times to come.
    Ozil and Ramsey are so dangerous with their runs and passes, they cut the Lyon defence to pieces time and time again. Great football to watch.
    The 3rd goal, from Iwobi, was the most enjoyable: 2 first touch passes and 1st touch finish in the roof of the net. Incredible, unstoppable! All defenders could barely do is to watch it fly to the net.

  48. bjtgooner

    “It was very pleasing to see some of the young players acquitting themselves well”

    Indeed it was. Although he was only on for a very short while a certain Reine-Adelaide made a real impression with me.

    Sublime touch and skills.

  49. Strus

    I think sometimes as defenders they just end up looking at each other saying ‘What the f**k happened there’ ?

    It happened a couple of times today. I think it’s going to happen quite a few times this season.

  50. I guess one could think about putting up banners with the flags of all the countries that have Arsenal supporter clubs. But then I suspect we’d rapidly run out of space:)

  51. Did I hear someone say we need a new GP,DM and a world class striker to demolish Lyon?? 🙂

  52. I would point out that there aren’t many CFs (Including ‘world class’ ones, whatever that means) that could have made the pass Giroud did for Oxs goal. Beautifully weighted and timed.

  53. Grenier, the French player who got hurt by himself, apparently tore a quad muscle in that incident, and could be out for a while.

    Jambug, maybe that’s another poster? WTF? 🙂

  54. Billy The Dog
    So it’s Scotland Arsenal’s banner. There was no indication, but good to see it if this is true.
    Re Untold’s banner. I don’t think the UA will appear anywhere on it. Or did I get that wrong?

  55. Spoiled yet again by some glorious football.

    Hope all those who watched on BT noticed something extraordinary in the commentary : the ex-player commentator, Richard Hughes, was hugely impressive throughout, and…called the situation as it really is, i.e that we are in a very good place and played wonderfully today.

    He has stood out in the last year on BT as massively superior to most of the other people on their roster, so I was delighted that this carried through to the first Arsenal game I’ve heard him do.

    Looked him up last year and was surprised to see he spent time with us as a youth player. However, I believe this has nothing to do with his positivity (indeed, Wenger released him without a game so there’s no real reason for him to show any bias towards us), instead he’s just calling it normally, and it’s quite extraordinary to hear it.

    No coincidence for me that, like the other guy on BT who seems to have a much better football brain than the rest, owen Hargreaves, much of his football education took place outside the UK.

    Doubt they’ll let him do an Arsenal game again!

    Informed, funny, free of cliches; original thoughts; neutral or even positive attitude to Arsenal…it just aint right. Plus, like Hargreaves, he sounds a bit funny. No, not right at all…give us Macca, Sav, Jammo, Owen; give us real British football minds!

  56. The Ox and Iwobi have post game interviews up on the Arsenal website. Iwobi’s ends with:

    > “My family, my friends, my close friends even my uncle was here today so I was glad to get a goal for them.”

    Good for both of them.

  57. So we have fans in Scotland as well. Big following in Ireland too, they should get a banner sorted. Great performance, exquisite goals.
    Wenger should dedicate this win to Lord Harris

  58. Got back much earlier this week, because it helps that I’m staying in north London ?
    Great performance by everyone today but I particularly liked the way the Ox approached this game – reckon he was sending a message to AW and Woy, ‘I’m ready to shine this season’ magic
    Looking forward to seeing Tony, Billy the Dog and Sir Hardly tomorrow

  59. Took my girl for her first game today, she said (at 2-0) ‘they’ll be 4-0 up by HT) and that we’d get 6 in total. She’s picking the lottery numbers from now on!

  60. @Jambug

    I agree about young Adelaide, looks to me as if we have picked an exceptional one there, look forward to following his development.

  61. Just up at Arsenal, is an article about Adelaide. Someone at Arsenal must be reading Untold.

    Blacksheep, thank your daughter for helping with the game. 🙂

    Still no note about Coquelin being sick or anything. One article noted that Coquelin had problems with Fekir late in the first half.

    I kind of miss those avatars today. Oh well.

  62. Rich

    “Hope all those who watched on BT noticed something extraordinary in the commentary : the ex-player commentator, Richard Hughes, was hugely impressive throughout, and…called the situation as it really is, i.e that we are in a very good place and played wonderfully today.”

    Spooky !! You and I seem to be tuned in so much.

    Myself and Mrs J had been joking about how good he was, to the extent that we where saying ‘He wont be coming out for the second half if he carries on like this”

    He was brilliant. So glad it wasn’t our imagination. But as you say:

    “Doubt they’ll let him do an Arsenal game again”

    “Informed, funny, free of cliches; original thoughts; neutral or even positive attitude to Arsenal…it just aint right.”

    Exactly, but as you suggest, will he be allowed to carry on in such vein?

    Lets hope so, such a refreshing change to likes of Owen !!

  63. Arsenal Ladies play Notts County tomorrow at Meadow Park 14:00

    Assuming no problems with water, as an Arsenal U18/U21 game against Boreham Wood was postponed on Friday due to a waterlogged pitch.

    Sunderland Ladies won their game today, to jump into first place. If Arsenal win tomorrow, we would be tied with Sunderland. And Chelsea is right in the thick of things as well.

    So, if you have nothing to do tomorrow, you might go out to Meadow Park. Besides, the game at Emirates will probably be boring. Who would want to see Cech in his home debut? 🙂

    Jambug, I am assuming you are talking about Michael Owen. Earlier Rich had brought up Owen Hargreaves. M Owen has played for both Liverpool and ManU, Owen H only played for ManU. But having commentators associated with either ManU or Liverpool is usually problems. Something about that river I think.

  64. Sounds like it was a very good performance. And emerging talent bubbling under….

    “On one side the questions in the press is, ‘How do you keep everybody happy?’, and on the other hand, one minute later they ask me, ‘Why don’t you buy any more players?’. So, if I cannot keep the ones I already have happy why should I buy more?” – Wenger.

  65. In the team news for West Brom, we have: Pulis: We could help Diaby

    And Diaby had a medical at WBA yesterday. I hope this works for him!

    In fabricated transfer news, Arsene Wenger apparently thought the suggestion of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as a transfer target made some sense, but felt a player his own age wasn’t really going to make a go of it. Instead, he has opened talks with Sim Bhullar, a 7’5″ 360 pound basketball player from Canada. Arsene felt that Peter Crouch would be in for quite the shock when he goes to lineup for a corner kick and finds a defender one foot taller than he is standing next to him.

    What we were hoping, is that Sim would spend most of his time with one of the local basketball teams, and that we would bring him in for select games and to practice with the squad.

    It is not known how Sim’s speed and turning ability compare to fan favorite Per Mertesacker.

  66. Arsenal on fire yesterday-Urzel, the King of the Emirates!What a fantastic player maker he is.The Community Centre shield should be interesting this year…

  67. Jambug

    Ha. Ditto, I’m glad of some confirmation I wasn’t overdoing it in how good/normal a commentator he is.

    Thing that made it a little weird (and extra enjoyable) is that I’d thought he was a cut above when hearing him do a few Serie A games last year on the same channel.

    Helps me to think I didn’t just lose my bearings with the total novelty of someone being very positive about our team, and rather that the truth is that the first time a good unbiased commentator comes along, one who not coincidentally comes from a different background to your typical Brit player, he’s likely to be very positive about this current Arsenal team and to be free of the usual bullshit.

    BT sport is actually where it’s at for all these interesting events *. Sky, I’m increasingly convinced, is game over territory. They have to be convinced you’ll be their kind of person and do it their way before they’ll let you on air.

    We should probably feel a little sorry for McManaman and co. He’s a guy who played at the highest level and actually cut it at Madrid, yet he is of the belief we are the same as last year, and the year before, and before,etc

    * Well, one other. It was where Liam Brady silenced a panel who were beginning to rip into and mock Wenger with the usual rubbish.

  68. Gord

    Cheers. I’m hoping that commentator does today’s game as well. Will be quite the comedown from yesterday if we get Robbie Savage in the pouring rain.

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