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Liverpool – Arsenal : 3-3 it sure was entertaining

By Walter Broeckx

Arsenal made 5 changes compared to the team that started the last match.

Mertesacker and Monreal came back in the team and Gabriel and Gibbs went back to the bench. In midfield Ramsey, Flamini and Özil were back in the team. This at the expence of Chambers, Iwobi and Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Team that started: Cech, Bellerin, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Flamini, Ramsey, Campbell, Ozil, Walcott, Giroud.

On the beach: Macey, Gabriel, Chambers, Gibbs, Arteta, Iwobi, Oxlade-Chamberlain.


Llalana ran in to Mertesacker and went down but no foul and correct no decision from the ref to give a penalty to Liverpool after some 5 minutes. Liverpool starting with lots of pressure all over the field and not giving much time to Arsenal who found it difficult to get the ball moving. Liverpool got a corner from the early pressure and when Arsenal lost the ball and was desorganised Cech could only push the shot away but in the feet of Firmino who put the ball over the line. 1-0 to Liverpool after 10 minutes.


Arsenal then tried to get forward. Giroud with a header, the ball came to Ramsey who gave it to Campbell, a turn inside and a pass back to Ramsey and GOAL! Ramsey with a neat finish in the first corner. 1-1 after 15 minutes.

Giroud needed some medical attention after a clash of heads with a Liverpool defender from the header that was at the start of the goal. Arsenal with a man short for a few minutes. But Giroud returned.

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Arsenal losing the ball a few times and Firmino capitalised with a shot from outside the upper corner. Unstoppable for Cech. 2-1 for Liverpool after 19 minutes. Arsenal having too much trouble to keep the ball in the team since the start of the match.


Giroud with a header towards Ramsey who lobbed the ball over Mignolet but Sakho saved it on the line. Ramsey with the corner, an inswinger and Giroud poked it past Mignolet. GOAL! 2-2 after 25 minutes.


Arsenal with a great attack, Campbell to Walcott who passed it to Giroud in the middle of the goal but for some reason the sliding Giroud missed the open goal chance. Next a shot from Campbell but too weak to trouble Mignolet. Still 2-2 after 30 minutes.


Campbell being pulled a bit but not noticed by the ref or assistant and the penalty was not given. Campbell was going for the return ball from a 1-2 combination and could have been in a good position. Play continued and Campbell forced a corner but Per couldn’t head it home as the ball bounced between his and Sakho’s head. Then some quiet 5 minutes but then Cech had to be alert to stop a cross from reaching a Liverpool player in the middle. At the other end Walcott with a shot but it took a deflection and went out for a corner. Meanwhile Jones had given a license to foul Özil all over the field without calling any fouls. In the extra time a cross fell kindly for Firmino who hit the top of the crossbar with his shot. 2-2 at half time after a crazy 45 minutes of football from both teams.


Özil with a good cross to Campbell but his effort with his right foot went well over the crossbar. The first time Özil got in to some space in this match. At the other end Moreno also missed his shot completely. Walcott with a long run but his effort went wide of the post. Clyne deliberately handling the ball cost him a yellow card. Bellerin first to the ball in midfield starting an Arsenal attack, to Campbell who tried to play to Ramsey but a little deflection took the ball to Giroud who turned and GOAL! 2-3 to The Arsenal after 55 minutes.


The match went on now with Liverpool trying to attack again a bit more. Arsenal still 2-3 in front after 60 minutes.


Giroud almost getting a shot away after some hard work from Campbell but the defenders blocked the effort. Liverpool getting corner and the following shot is diverted in to another corner off Campbell. Clyne kicking Campbell on the knee… could and probably should have been his second yellow card. Mertesacker has to clear a cross in front of goal and Benteke. Arsenal under pressure now. Campbell despite looking exhausted battling as if his live depending on it. Benteke with a low shot but a comfortable save for Cech. Still 2-3 for Arsenal after 75 minutes.


Time for changes. Campbell goes off and Oxlade-Chamberlain came on. Gibbs came on in the place of Walcott. Mertesacker again with a great block to deny Llalana. A deflected cross comes to a Liverpool player in an offside position but the assistant gives nothing but a corner. Özil with a amazing control and a good cross but Mignolet just first to the ball. Sakho with a scissor tackle on Giroud, wasn’t that a yellow card ref?


Flamini blocking a shot from Ibe as Liverpool push forward in the closing stages. Arteta comes on for Özil in the 86th minute. Arsenal being pushed back and in the last minute a cross goes to Benteke who heads it on to Allen who puts it over the line. 3-3 after 90 minutes.


An amazing and very entertaining match probably got a fair result. Both teams went for it and could have won it. Looking at the other results not a bad result in fact. Manchester City dropping points at home against Everton. Leicester winning at Tottenham brings them level with us again. 3 points in front of Manchester City.








61 comments to Liverpool – Arsenal : 3-3 it sure was entertaining

  • Tony Attwood

    And the Tiny Totts lost, and Man C drew.

  • omgarsenal

    A win would have been nice but it was a very entertaining game and the Gunners did well to keep the pressure on. I am sure the media will gush all over Klopp and Firmino (who was very good all game) and dismiss Wenger and Giroud entirely. It looks like Leicester are the real thing so far……should be a real cracker of a game when they come to the Emirates!

  • A very entertaining game if not somewhat heart stopping , fair result good officiating credit to Arsenal for coming back twice , great spirit in the side .

  • Mandy Dodd

    Entertaining as everyone has said. Ref seem to have done well. Some of ours put in excellent performance, but I think tiredness , and the conditions got in the way in the end… we were sitting back a bit too much. Not really our style in those conditions But credit to our players, most other results didn’t harm too much and still top of the league.
    Liverpool put in a huge effort, to their credit but wonder if a Southampton style energy loss awaits?
    A shame we couldn’t hold on but life isn’t always like that

  • ob1977

    A good match, think we were poor in possession especially after taking the lead, but a good point after going a goal down twice early on, just a shame we couldn’t hold on for the win, now to go back to my mates telling me how it’s Arsene’s fault as his substitutions were shit, and we are useless and throwing away the league by drawing at Anfield, whereas I think ours is probably a better result that drawing at home to Everton or losing at home to Leicester…

  • serge

    “Meanwhile Jones had given a license to foul Özil all over the field without calling any fouls”

    Really? Not that I noticed .

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Judge, I will wait for the ref review before saying it was good officiating, I watched from about the half hour mark and thought it a fairly typical one-sided piece of officiating entirely in Liverpool’s favour. We should have had a penalty, they should have had a player sent off. At least that’s what I saw.

  • Tai

    Great game – same intensity with the reverse at the Emirates…only this time the goals flowed. So disappointed after nearly coasting home but not a bad result. Playing like we did we should beat Stoke on Sunday.

    And Joel Campbell? Even when everyone is fit, I won’t start him on the bench any more.

  • Pat

    Agree with Walter about the two yellows not given against Liverpool, one of which should have been a second yellow and therefore a sending off. Why do you not believe Ozil was being fouled all over the pitch, Serge? We’re you watching for it? Not given penalty for Campbell as well. So not a perfect referee performance.

    But a battling performance from the team especially in the face of a very energetic performance from Liverpool. A draw from a difficult away match is not a bad result. Giroud’s second goal was great as well.

  • That was a great game of football although I am gutted that we didn’t win. Our 2 come backs are what I am happiest about. Considering that our rival for the title, Man City also drew when they are expected to win, we might as well assume that we both won today. It has exactly the same impact point-wise but it’s a bit worse for Man City on head-to-head.

    As for Leicester, their result today reminds me of their 2-1 win over Chelsea which I was thoroughly satisfied with even though it dropped us to 2nd place then. This is a lot more enjoyable as the so called “league form team” and the scum of North London have been brought back down to Earth. Love it.

  • Menace

    Flamino got away with a second yellow before he scored his second. Giroud was being fouled as usual. Ozil was being kicked almost every time he had the ball. one instance where Jones showed advantage but didn’t give the foul when advantage didn’t accrue. There were offsides that were ignored, one was so close to gifting Liverpool a goal.

    Serge – you must be watching the game like most others assuming the Referee is a cousin of St, Peter.

  • Tasos

    Should’ve won, might have lost but in the end a draw was a fair enough result, overall. I though Giroud was immense at times in this match and Joel Campbell also added to his growing reputation.

    Not sure where Liverpool got their energy levels from in this match but that much effort usually takes its toll in future matches. With their busy fixture schedule and high injury list they will suffer a detrimental reaction at some stage.

    Arsenal must also hope this game hasn’t taken too much out of them for Sunday’s match at Stoke. They looked tired at the end tonight.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Oh even the moaners are on it again. Well one is.
    Just swearing and cursing away his sad live.
    Crying and stamping his feet on the ground…
    being abusive… so not published

  • Strus

    Let’s say it clear: on this matchady all top sites have drawn/ lost to minor opposition!
    Arsenal is still a title chance no.2/no/1 in all bookies, and main title favourite in most football stats models. It was a good point, a really tough match.
    When you concider that the draw has made with at lest 3 players on the pitch wew underachieved and 3 of 5 best players are out- this is a good result. When you concider that City should have won against Everton- it is a sweet matchday, where the on real opponent has lost easier points.

  • Tasos,

    I am not one bit surprised by Liverpool players’ energy. No matter how bad things may be going for Man United, Chelsea and Liverpool, you can be sure that they will triple their efforts against Arsenal.

  • Andy Mack

    I’d like another look at the run up to there first.
    It looked to me like Can had a hack at TW which caused him to lose the ball.

    I’m not as unhappy with the draw at their place as I am with the poor officials at our place which turned a 1-0 home win into a 0-0 draw.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Oh Walter, please publish this moron! Give us a laugh….top of the league and all that

  • Mandy Dodd

    Bootoomee, exactly, a massive surge of energy against us. Spurs and Southampton did the same, but sometimes these teams falter after these efforts,,have seen little of Southampton since……and as for Spurs, will let the media go for that one.
    Liverpool rested most of their team in the FA Cup, we played quite a few of ours.
    Gutted to lose a goal so late, but other results put things into perspective, the team did ….for the most part….ok against a team who gave their all to the point of near hospitalisation I would guess in some cases.
    The likes of Liverpool and Spurs , the way they play need either something illegal, or genetically prone cross country runners with physical strength and technique , and an ability to overcome the demands of this league….not easy to find.
    The negativistas say we lost the title this evening, as frustrating as that late goal was, they are very wide of the mark.

  • Robert

    From the BBC: “Speaking after the 3-3 draw at Liverpool, Wenger said: “[Mohamed Elneny] has joined us and we will see if he can qualify for Sunday.”

  • Gunz


    “Mohamed Elneny: Arsenal confirm signing from Basel”

  • bjtgooner

    Bootoomee & Mandy

    Agree with your comments – some teams really run like mad things when playing against us & then calm down against other teams. Stoke are another of these – usually give us a very hard game & then lie down against the Manures.

    I actually wondered if the Spuddies were on performance enhancers the last time they played us.

    A good performance in part tonight, I think we tired towards the end – the Dippers should have been fresher having rested 10 of the first team against Exeter.

    Jones was the typical PGMO rep – looked as if he was under orders to let the Dippers away with as many fouls as possible.

    But – well done our guys in very difficult circumstances.

  • Menace

    For those who really don’t understand the Laws of the Game, I hope you saw what the PGMO official did when Ozil was pushed to the ground. He gave a bounced ball as Ozil had possession!!! That was the height of PGMO’s new Laws.

    Despite this kind of blatant cheating, there are those who claim that the game was fairly officiated.

    I accept that Liverpool played at a high tempo & destabilised some of Arsenals defensive passing. That however is no excuse to persistently foul the player with the ball. Contact with the player before contact with the ball is a foul (but apparently not for the northern based PGMO officials!!). If any of you watch the game again, observe how Arsenal players play the ball & not the opponent. It is quality clean football. Liverpool played the man not the ball (foul or perhaps southern foul, northern tackle).

  • Brickfields Gunners

    We should have been able to hold on for all 3 points, but am not unduly unhappy as many of the other results weren’t too bad . It was quite a fast game , with non stop end to end action .
    In the end the weather and probably tiredness slowed us down. A valuable point none the less .
    Up the Gunners !

  • ARSENAL 13

    These high tempo games were our demons. We found hard to get any(most of them) positive result in such games before. Not anymore.

    Sad we conceded so late in the game. BUT overall an entertaining game.

    PS: Referee having a good game!!…Well, he was not totally fair was he?? He was better than the worst we got before, but not fair.

  • Al

    Scanning the BBC match report and saw a sub heading saying Arsenal pay for their frailties… just shaking my head.

    A second match I’ve missed in succession but sounds like, from everyone’s comments including the managers, that it was a thoroughly entertaining match. Can’t we just enjoy that without throwing some negativity in? Yes a bit disappointing looking at how close we were to collecting all 3 points but sure most would have taken a point before kick-off.

    At the end of the day nothing changes much at the top(I’m not really seeing Leicester as the main rivals to the title). If anything, city should be more disappointed they drew at home, in a winnable match. I wouldn’t expect them to approach their trip to Anfield with the same view that it will be a winnable match, pretty sure they’ll be happy with a draw there. In his prematch preview Lawrensen, who I don’t rate that highly as a pundit, said a draw would be suitable for Arsenal and that wasn’t even taking into account the results in other fixtures featuring our rivals, and that’s what we got. One game less, no harm done, what’s not to like about that.

  • Pedro

    7 goals conceded in last 2 away games is not how titles are won so this will need to be addressed quickly. Ramsey is the problem, and will always be the problem because he will not or cannot play with discipline. Flamini was left time after time by himself in the middle because Ramsey showed no football intelligence. I hope Wenger will have a look at this for the up and coming tough away fixtures.

  • Yes these are the types of games we need before we crash barcelona,the intensity,the atmosphere,the ref expect all that when we face them. Stoke next if we take three points from britannia stadium we will install a fear factor in whoever we face. Watch this space

  • Dawie (SA)

    It always amazes me that some viewers see what happens, but don’t know the laws of the game. See how Giroud gets blown up when Sakho jumps over him, arms on his shoulders to stop him from jumping, BUT still gets a foul against Giroud???? Then to top it, someone must have been watching the game without the view on, stating that it was a fair result and good officiating. I would like to recommend that we all read up on the laws and see what it states about a player that runs into the back of someone who is in possession of the ball. Last I saw, that is a clear foul and Arsenal gets penalised, though Pool can do it as often as they please. To the extent that Ozil is pushed down after the bump, kicked as well and to top it: a contested dropped ball??? Which laws are being applied here????

  • John

    It was a fair result in the end with good performanes by Giroud ,Campbell and Monreal.I thought the referee was excellent also but people on here will still moan about him.If you want perfect officiating then you are watching the wrong sport.They are human and make mistakes just like you me and the players.My only concern is that when we play teams that dont give us time on the ball and press us we dont look comfortable.Maybe that was due to playing the cup match a few days earlier.Liverpool players looked fresher.

  • ob1977

    The ref wasn’t fair, but he was just a typical homer or pgmol Liverpool appointment, rather than evil let anything go lets screw Arsenal ref we get when playing, Stoke, Chelsea, or Utd… But he clearly let Liverpool get away with a fair bit especially early on allowing them to succeed with their “pressing” game.

    I had a laugh at a couple of articles today, 1 criticised us for failing to hold onto a lead, whilst praising Liverpool for coming back, oh the irony…

    Others highlighting a penalty not given to City yesterday, and then a poor refereeing performance allowing Sunderland victory, I had to point out the lack of similar articles for our non-given penalties, or the disgraceful performance of the officials in our Southampton match…

  • Menace

    FFS John – in an age where technology exists & many young people are looking for work, there must be a hundred better qualified people for each of the PGMO. Your stupid attitude of imperfection is OK because humans make mistakes is suited to digging trenches for sewage pipes. There are courses that these PGMO people attend & tests that they are supposed to have passed but I would not employ any of them to clean boots.

    As for watching sport, your understanding of sport begs the question ‘Do you know what sport is?’. The pressing is OK as long as there is no foul. But the Liverpool press was foul after foul without any reaction from the cheating PGMO whistle blower. A kick on a player is a foul at any speed when it doesn’t contact the ball first.

  • serge

    If people want wimp football then they are watching the wrong league. It would appear from some of the comments that every challenge or tackle on an Arsenal player is perceived as a foul.
    Jones certainly wasn’t perfect, but Liverpool’s high press was always going to create lots of contact and I thought he was fair throughout.
    Better to blame defensive mistakes ( of which there were plenty ) than the ref.
    We’ve got it all over again next match.

  • ARSENAL 13


    “If you want perfect officiating then you are watching the wrong sport.They are human and make mistakes just like you me and the players.”

    hahahahahahahah, What was that??

    Of course they are humans. But they are top level referees, which you and me cannot be (at least at present). So they are expected to be better than us. If ‘humans’ excuse is valid, then why not let me referee the game instead.

  • andy bishop

    We are the team to beat..Liverpool played above themselves and deserved the draw. Having said that like all potential champions we could have won it.
    There will be many more battles like this to overcome. I have been a critic of Giroud but Wenger seems to have worked his magic once again and last night he played like a world class “old fashion” centre forward. We are going to need him in the coming weeks.

  • Gord

    Wimp Football

    If England want a game of football with rules different from what is laid out in the Laws of the Game, they are free to form a new sport, write their new rules and play it. there will be no Champion’s League, as that is for the game described by the Laws of the Game. There will be no UEFA Euro Cup. There will be no World Cup. But they can kick and punch and shove people into holes and break legs to their hearts desire. And nobody will watch it (worldwide), so the TV money will probably largely go away.

    The world is playing and watching Association Football. If England wants to continue bastardizing the game, they will be pushed out. They are being pushed out. Almost every time they go to compete with other countries, they find they come home with their tail between their legs early. Because they don’t play by the rules.

    Get used to being knocked out cups in the first round. Look at Scotland with respect to Champions League and Europa League. Just like England, only a couple years ahead. Money or not, playing a different game than set aside in the Laws of the Game is going to take away one of the 4 places for Champions League. And some money will leave and you will be down to 3. Continue to play a different game, and 3 teams will be down to 2, and more money will leave. And not too far down the road, 0 Champions League places.

    No Champions League places. Fight with all the small countries from the very beginning of Europa League. Get kicked out in qualifying or first round of cup competitions. No hosting of World Cup. That is going to be your legacy, because you refuse to play the game the world has set out in the Laws of the Game.

    What could easily be the first step, if FIFA cleans up its act; all referees with FIFA badges have those badges removed.

    We don’t want Break Leg Football. We don’t want Ruptured ACL Football. We don’t want Concussion Football.

  • para

    Liverpool’s energy came from the preparation Klopp made them do, and the fact that it worked gave them more confidence. They surrounded Bellerin with 3 men when he got the ball, leaving him with no option but to check back, they did the same with three men in front of Giroud when Cech kicked the ball out, this way they most always got possession from the goal kick. On top of that they worked some set plays that could have damaged us more.

    Arsenal, a little surprised of Liverpool’s effort were flummoxed a little but soon recovered form and tried to control the game. Due to some misplaced passes this was not fully done and Pool had their share of the ball. We could have still won if we had not defended more on 2-3.

    Our biggest mistake is to go defensive when up by only one goal. We invite all the pressure and we all know that even the best defence always lets one or the other goal through at some time or the other. Logic says to me, that we risk the same if we attack as defend in this situation, that is, that they score, but gain the added bonus that we could score if we attack, but can’t when defending.

    Great game to watch, i enjoyed watching it.

  • Al

    I would so love to get my hands on Walter’s logs of IP addresses 🙂 Why? I’m sure we have a reincarnation of tailgunner aka rolf posting on here, under a different pseudonym of course. What is it with these people?

    I don’t understand the criticism of the team at all, tell me any side that’ll go to Anfield and score 3 against an official thats applying the laws selectively, and you won’t find many, even with an unbiased ref. A few positive posters have queried the drop goal after a foul on Ozil, but the negativistas continue to say the ref had an excellent game without even responding to how they interpreted that decision. Having witnessed the blatant bias against us in our last 2 home matches I’m positive this will be the story till the end of the season.

  • Rich

    Crazily entertaining game it was.

    Their equaliser was an extra bit sickening for me because I’d been fighting a mental battle, and had just about won it, to tell myself that, no, the equaliser isn’t a near guarantee, like some kind of law of nature. So it had a real nightmarish quality when it arrived.

    I think Wenger got it spot on to highlight the missed opportunities on the break as the frustration, as opposed to not keeping out the third.

    There’s only one way to give yourself a very high chance of closing out a game like that through defence, and that is by being a team like Athletico Madrid, or a Jose team with a title in sight and before things have turned to shit, i.e by doing it week after week, month after month, even when it is not really necessary, even when it seems you’d be better off just pushing for the next goal. I’d like us to be as good as possible at defending in those situations, but I wouldn’t be willing to become that kind of team in order to do so.

    As it happens, we were doing a pretty good job of it, they’d only created a couple of truly dangerous situations in the last twenty minutes. Those breaks were it, our chance to give a near guarantee of the win, and unfortunately we didn’t get them right as we normally would. No cause for stomping or wailing, just some regret.

    An extra little sting for me was that Alexis is close to his return and there is no one better for me on those sort of rapid breaks against a disorganised defence. Even here though I think you can find a positive in that: he is returning soon.

    Overall, I think our ideas about how to play were sound, our performance contained much more good than bad, fighting back from behind twice was a great sign…and curse you football Gods for hitting me with that nightmare of the late Anfield equaliser again!

    Oh, and shout-out to Giroud, he’s gone from very hard-working to phenomenally hard-working and was immense on the night.

  • Polo

    @Para, that’s the dilemma if we didn’t defend but attack and liverpool score, people will moan why we didn’t defend and went gung ho, never learn blah blah blah and Arsene doesn’t know tactics crap. If we defend and conceded still people will moan that why we defended and not attack, and that AW made poor tactical decision and substitution.

    Liverpool played extremely well and deserved a point so the end result is fair. Yes it is disappointing that we couldn’t hold on but that’s football. People need to remember how many Liverpool players in that team played in the FA Cup a few days ago and how many of Arsenal players played. So pretty much Liverpool had a slight advantage.

  • thierryhenry22

    OK I was gutted at full-time yesterday but today, a point at Anfield is always a good thing! Great game of footy.

  • Menace

    Wimp football? Look who are nominated for World Player of the Year. Can you see any tough guys who kick their opponents? You have to be dim to even contemplate calling Arsenal quality wimp football. Arsenal play quality football not PGMO in your face let him know you are there shit. The commentators talk like they were playing a mans game when in actual fact they were bullies.

    If you want physical contact sport play Rugby & call the referee ‘Sir’.

    The grass roots in England rob skill & encourage butch bully boys to injure skillful players. The FA know what is happening as do many in the game. It is a tragic shame for a beautiful game.

  • Good result, a win at Stoke would be massive . Giroud was superb last night, can’ t say the same about our subs, not good enough for me.
    Joel gets better and better, Theo was poor, inconsistent as ever.

  • John

    Technology does exist but until it is used more like it is in both codes of rugby mistakes will be made.Dont lecture me on sport as i have played the game for over 20 years and even though not as much now as it used to be ,football is a physical game and contact is inevitable.I watched the game just the once last night in realtime and thought the referee had a good game .He made a couple of dodgy decisions both way ,but on the whole was fair.What i didnt do was slow every contact down and scrutinise every time two players came together.I know now and again ,like at chelsea we dont always get the rub of the green but sometimes i think you and a few of your conspicacy theory friends on here are watching a different game altogether to the rest of the world.
    We better realise quickly that teams are going to play like liverpool and southampton did against us and get in our faces to stop us playing our normal game.Its up to our manager to be able to change tactics to cope with it.You can be sure Barcelona will press us all over the pitch and hunt the mistakes just like liverpool did last night.

  • serge


    I didn’t say that Arsenal play wimp football, but that some commenters here seem to want us to play that way and not be tackled or challenged.

  • Gord

    What do you mean that I am red carded? It wasn’t even a foul. I had to break his leg, he had outsmarted me and was about to score.

    Serge, go back to 1886 and Dial Square. Or go watch Hurley, Gaelic Football, Aussie Rules Football, Rugby Football. Not violent enough, go watch Mixed Martial Arts.

  • Rich


    No one wants wimp football.

    We- I, anyway- just can’t abide by the fact it is almost impossible for, say, Ozil to get a free kick when shoved in the back. I noticed that about a year ago, and it’s not like some kind of rule in ‘tough’ football that it’s ok to give someone a good shove from behind, instead it’s about 50-50, and Ozil simply never gets them, it’s more like 10-90 for him. They’ve got it in their mind that, as the media would suggest, it’s always a case of Ozil just not being strong enough, and that’s a load of rubbish. Hazard is probably 80-20.

    That’s the sort of thing that kills me. But…I actually thought the ref was alright yesterday, maybe even a bit better than that. Must admit, though, I’m just pathetically grateful when we don’t have someone who seems determined to screw us.

    The Campbell pull might well have been very hard to spot, and I don’t know if I would have given it even if I had ( though my old conviction remains it’s the type of thing we’d be more likely to be punished for than get in our favour); the late free kick looked a case of their man changing his path to run into Kos, but I bet that is very hard to spot at full speed; Clyne’s was prob a 2nd booking (but again I don’t know if I would have carded him myself, and again I reckon it’s something refs would be much more likely to give against than for us).

    He was ok,though, he stood up well to the Liverpool fans’ baying for every decision, and I was particularly relieved he stood up the couple of dives they made after tiny contact to try get pens. Wimpy stuff from them which thankfully went unrewarded.

    Now we need to hope Sunday’s ref stands up to the Stoke crowd.

  • Menace

    Gord you are right with your views. I played football in Kenya (school boy) & in the UK just for fun. I was not impressed with the way the game was played in UK because skill was killed by brute force. My son played for a while & still does (5 a side) but he has had a tough time. I occassionally watch Sunday league football but there seems little quality allowed by the officials. The physical game seems to percolate down to schools & a lot of technique is not allowed to flourish as it does in countries where the game is played bare foot. Contact is certainly part of the game but not brutality (just listen to the Stoke supporters to understand what has happend to English football).

    The officials who are FIFA accredited must realise what is happening, as do the FA who seem to condone nastiness without a whimper. You have correctly forecast the future of the game in England if the Laws of the Game are abused.

  • serge


    I get the impression that you’ve never actually watched any Premiership football, because if you had you’d know that it is full on and physical which is just how I like it. Leave the tika taka to La Liga.

  • Tasos


    Leave the tika taka to La Liga?

    What about the World Cups, and the European Championships, and the Champions League, and the Uefa Cups, and the World Club Championships.

    Yeah sod all that lot. Trophies only matter when its suits some people, apparently.

  • porter

    Polo your damned if you do damned if you don’t defence of the last twenty minutes misses the point totally. It’s not a case of attacking but when you remove Campbell , Ozil and Walcott you lose the ability to hold the ball up the pitch . it’s not a case of going for another goal but one of keeping their midfield a further 5 – 10 yards away from our penalty area and holding the ball giving the defence time to reorganise .As the pressure grew eventually we fell to a long ball headed back across our area. It was almost inevtitable as our only way out was to hoof it to Giroud who had no-one to help him and the ball was being hoiked straight back. That was the time where we needed bodies to press them and stop the long balls coming in.

  • serge


    Sorry, I don’t get your point.
    What does it have to do with me liking The Premier League?

  • Rich


    But did you feel it was a bad call to bring on Gibbs and Arteta in those roles in the first month of season when it ‘worked’ successfully four times- Chelsea, Palace, Newcastle, Stoke- in a row when we were 1 goal ahead?

    If it was the wrong move last night, wasn’t it then as well?

    Whether it was the right move or not can’t depend purely on whether or not it succeeds, football is too close and chaotic a sport for that.

    Only managed to find 11 games this year we’ve had a one-goal lead going into the last 5-10. We’ve held on to win or extended the lead in 10 of them before last night, most times using the same approach as last night, with Gibbs and, if available, Arteta. 10 out of 10 seems a sound basis for trying the same again.

    Agree,though, that there was most likely a misstep or mistake somewhere along the line to allow the space for the cross (don’t recall the play immediately before), but don’t see how that’s tactical or about not retaining the ball.

  • Tasos


    I also like the Premier league but not to the detriment of other leagues.

    Maybe I have taken your comments out of context. You appeared to imply that La Liga plays wimp football.

    Spain dominated the sport of football for years, whilst Barcelona took the club game to unparalleled levels excellence.

    Neither could be described as ineffectual.

  • serge


    No problems. I do like all those other competitions (other than Uefa Cup & World Club Championship) and not forgetting FA cup, and take your point about Barcelona of course.

  • porter

    I think the idea of changing players was correct however I believe that the wrong players were employed both on and off . As i have said he removed any chance that we had to keep the ball further up the pitch and allowed a rampant Liverpool side to come at us with high balls into the box . Surely Chambers and Gabriel were more suited to 1 pressure them in the middle of the park and 2 win more headers at the back. It might also been provident to keep pace up front and if Campbell was dead on his feet it was time for Theo or The Ox to do the running next to Giroud who had the thankless task of trying to stem the tide on his own. I can assure you that this is not hindsight as I was spitting feathers as the changes were made.

  • finsbury

    Great game today footy.
    Looking forward to the ref review.

    Billy (Joel) came off hobbling as minutes before he been hacked quite badly and quit obviously out of uncontrolled spite (of course no yellow!), and there was another blatant kick not carded towards the end. All very odd and remarkable when we watch other games in the league. And so we remark upon it 🙂

  • finsbury

    Of > today

  • finsbury

    ‘Scuse the copy and paste but Ian describes the above far better then I:

    “I think we deserved all three points, maybe I’m not very even handed.
    Apart from our battling display, I also felt we came off worse on the decisions front.
    Definitel a penalty when Campbell was hauled down in front of the ref and on the same side as the lino. The refs leneancy meant several pool players wernt booked and when clyne kicked Campbell in the second half he should have walked. If it had been cricket he would of walked himself without waiting for decision. The drop ball incident was comical, when Ozil sheilded the ball rolling the challenge that come from behind was more appropriate for a porn film than on a football pitch.
    Once again Untold called it 100% correct saying based on previous display s he was extremely unlikely to give us a pen and he also would be reluctant to show yellow and reds. Sometimes I am amazed at just how correct they get it.”

    The PGMOB representative “performed” exactly as anticipated in the preview. Remarkable! And so, we remark upon it.

    The arsenal player commentry during a recent tilted game was also remarkable. It takes effort to ignore the bias.

  • Al

    Rich 3:58pm
    Should Wenger not had gone on to make those subs with the outcome having been the same I bet porter would have been screaming why not bring in some defensive players to shore up the defence and see the game out. Apparently they’re always right, these hindsight managers.

    When we lost 5-1 there Wenger was accused of going gung ho and abandoning defence. This time we are 4 or 5 minutes from the end and he makes a defensive substitutions to see the game out, and he gets slaughtered for not continuing with attacking football. He will never get it right, in their eyes.

  • Somil

    For me, the equaliser I don’t even think it was down to the subs. A home team that’s behind is always going to put pressure on you, bombard you to try and get the goal. It’s up to the defence to deal with what’s thrown at them, and we didn’t do that with that ball. Benteke pulled off Koscielny who should have been tighter and out-jumped Monreal; Bellerin was just half a second too slow to react to the run of Joe Allen, and his shot had too much on it for Cech who couldn’t keep it out despite getting a hand to it.

    Really, really annoying, not simply because we dropped points from a winning position, but also – for me at least – it made me worry that the team felt somewhat haunted from last season. Different manager, different players, but the same fragility at the end. We certainly had the experience on the pitch to be able to see that game out, that we didn’t is a worry.

    My concern over the last few weeks that we’ve allowed too many chances on our goal wasn’t helped last night either. Although our record (in terms of results) since being forced to play Ramsey and Flamini together in midfield is actually quite good, the longer their partnership continues the more apparent it is that they simply don’t gel and that’s something we’ve got to address.

  • Porter

    Do you people understand the difference between attacking and playing possession further up the pitch .At no point did I talk of going for another goal, it’s about keeping the other team away from the goal. By dropping so far back Bent eke was heading the ball back about six yards from our goal. Had they been pushed further up the pitch he would have been about 10 to 12yards out and the shot would have been nearly 30 yards and unlikely to have gone in.
    Al read my previous posts and my remarks about hindsight. Sure we did it times before and got away with it, however if you keep sticking your hand in the fire , you get burned eventually.