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January 2021

Manchester United – Arsenal 3-2

By Walter Broeckx

Arsenal made a few changes. Some forced other not. Theo Walcott comes on for the injured Oxlade-Chamberlain. At the back Gabriel comes in for Mertesacker who sat in the bench.

Up front we had Welbeck who came on and Giroud dropped to the bench.

Also on the bench we had Iwobi and Elneny.

Startin team : Cech, Bellerin, Koscielny, Gabriel, Monreal, Coquelin, Ramsey, Alexis, Ozil, Walcott, Welbeck.

On the bench: Ospina, Mertesacker, Gibbs, Elneny, Campbell, Iwobi, Giroud.

The first real chance for Arsenal when Özil plays an excellent pass to Monreal who is one on one with De Gea. Monreal his shot was straight at De Gea. What a big chance alas Monral couldn’t do what he did last season and open the score at Old Trafford. Varela drags Alexis down and rightfully gets a yellow card. Rashford with a dive outside the penalty area but the ref gives a free kick and not the penalty that Manchester United wanted. Should have been a foul for Arsenal and a yellow card against Rashford. Memphis with the free kick but Cech saved. No score after 15 minutes.

Monreal with good cross but a United defender first on the ball and Alexis fires the rebound wide. Carrick with a late tackle on Welbeck also goes in the book. Alexis offside after the free kick so nothings comes from it. Welbeck goes down but Carrick played the ball so no penalty for Arsenal. And as so many times before at Old Trafford with the first possible chance United score. Walcott losing the ball in the midlle of th efield, a cross from the right, Gabriel couldn’t really kick it away and the ball fell kindly for Rashford who beat Cech. 1-0 for United after 29 minutes.

To make things worse only two minutes later a cross from Lingard and Rashord heads it past Cech. 2-0 for United after 32 minutes. Arsenal couldn’t get their passing going. Too slow in the build up giving United time to regroup at the back and when they tried to play faster the accuracy went completely. A foul on Alexis in midfield, Özil with the free kick and Welbeck with the header! GOAL! 2-1 after 40 minutes.

Another free kick in the last minute but the wall and a block only resulting in a corner. Another corner and Rashford clears the ball off the line with his arm. That should have been a penalty and a red card against Rashford and United. At half time United 2-1 in front.

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Rashford goes down holding his groin in the first minutes of the second half. Arsenal monopolising the ball in the opening minutes of the second half. Rojo just in front of Ramsey clearing the ball. Coquelin at the other end with an important block after a free kick for Manchester United. Arsenal with most of the ball but no real danger in the United penalty area. Still 2-1 behind after 60 minutes.

The passing really not up to the Arsenal standard on many occasions. Walcott goes off and Giroud comes on after 62 minutes. Rashford with a possible counter and he lays it in front of Herreira who shoots past Cech from outside the penalty area as the ball bounces off the chest of Koscielny in the Arsenal goal. 3-1 for United after 65 minutes.

United much quicker on the ball and too many Arsenal players completely not in form. Arsenal with an attack Alexis with a cross from the right, Welbeck against De Gea and Özil with the rebound. GOAL! 3-2 after 69 minutes. Elneny comes on for Coquelin.

Ramsey reacts after being fouled and pushes Herreire away who also gets a yellow card as he put his hand against the face of Ramsey. Elneny also goes in the book for a scissor tackle. Arsenal still 3-2 behind after 75 minutes.

Giroud heads over after an Alexis cross. Welbeck goes off and Iwobi comes on after 82 minutes. Özil with a free kick but the header of Kos has no power. An 1-2 between Ramsey and Alexis is goes wrong and De Gea can pick up the ball. Özil gets a yellow card for a push in the extra time. Januzay also in the book for an arm in the face.

A poor performance from Arsenal in this match. We should have been in front in the first 15 minutes but we missed a big chance. United didn’t miss their chances and that was the difference. We played too slow and couldn’t really make the difference. A bit unlucky with the 3rd goal but that is football of course.

The only good thing is that we at least scored 2 goals but overall a very disappointing  performance from the whole team that played under par.

118 comments to Manchester United – Arsenal 3-2

  • SheWoreAYellowRibbon

    It’s been all too predictable a week unfortunately. Groundhog Day again for a manager a decade out of date in the Premiership and Champions league.

    The most worrying aspect is that the title may head for the wrong half of North London. Huge game coming up next weekend.

  • gouresh

    We were not up for the game. Every single one of them. We got out played by a bunch of kids. We had no focus, aggression. How many chances we created? If we play like this we are fucked. Need to get our act together and very very quickly.

  • Jammy J

    If anyone blames the ref for this loss, then they are completely discrediting the whole referee corruption theory. He was absolutely fine this match and to blame him in this instance just gives the impression that you’re placing literally all of Arsenals troubles on the ref and using him as a scapegoat.

    In 90% of matches in PL the bias against Arsenal is ever-so apparent and you would be a fool to ignore it, but in this instance it would be extremely narrow-sighted and foolish to blame the loss completely on him.

  • ClockEndRider

    That was a truly pathetic showing. There really were no redeeming features in that game. How much longer is Wenger going to put up. With playing 10 men plus Walcott. At least if we play 11 we might have a chance,even playing as poorly as that. Against a team f debutants. And 2 central midfielders playi g at centre half.

  • Wolfgang

    I wont mince words. Wenger has been given many opportunities and time to make Arsenal champs and has failed.Imho,Wenger is the only manager playing a patient buildup with passing frenzy.MU scored with direct moves.
    Football is asimple game but Wenger has made it into a complicated puzzle with the attack taking too long to pose athreat. No wonder they lost.
    He was lucky to beat Hull and AV in the cf. Against any other top team he could have lost.

  • timo

    time for Campbell to get back into the team. we looked too slow. Sanchez final ball always poor for three games running. he can learn from bench too, so many overhit passes

  • WalterBroeckx

    oh well maybe next Saturday we are top of the league…

  • Josif

    We play Swansea. A must-win game for us. Swansea have their own worries but they haven’t lost at Emirates in the last three visits. In fact, they have won more league games at Emirates since their return to EPL than Arsenal including the last one.

    Tottenham visit West Ham. It could be a tricky one for Spuds. Payet didn’t play in the reverse fixture so he could show some of his magic against Spuds as well.

    Leicester play against Tony Pulis at home. They had problems against Norwich yesterday so it could be even worse for them.

    The title bid is still on but, quite frankly, I don’t know how a team with certain players that I shall name come May can win the league.

  • ClockEndRider

    Sorry but to say we were lucky to win either cup final is just nonsense. We’re all angry but descending into making unsupportable patently untrue comments doesn’t help .

  • Max

    The thing is, we’re supposed to be fighting for the title. And United are certainly not. Louis van Gaal’s side have been stupendously erratic this season and with an injury crisis of Gunners-esque proportions they had little choice but to field a team of reserves, including an 18-year-old striker, Marcus Rashford, making his league debut. Naturally Arsenal let that kid score twice.

  • SheWoreAYellowRibbon

    Great comment josef. But surely you meant manager rather than players.

  • porter

    Josif if your prediction comes true I would be eternally grateful and might even take up religion, however I think my atheist roots are safe

  • hrishi


    We beat Spurs, Liverpool, Everton and Man United on the way to winning our two FA Cups. Can’t blame it on luck when we win and Wenger when we lose…

  • ColG

    The reality is at the moment spurs and Leicester look better teams. Arsenal have individuals who would get into either. That is not the fault of referees, tapping up, financial doping or even (in spur’s case) excessive fixtures.

  • Polo

    Bad performance from the boys today,very disappointed that we couldn’t beat ManU C team. I hope that the Barca game didn’t affect our players psychology especially with AW coming out so strong criticizing the player in the media. We were very poor, especially the midfield and it was a frustrating match. Our players look lethargic and look as if they don’t want to play. Walcott and Ramsay is not playing well at all.

    Let hope we bounce back and not lose any more matches otherwise I fear our title chance is gone.

  • norman14

    That was indeed, pathetic.

    Not blaming Pawson at all – but, he did miss a stonewall penalty for a foul on Welbz in the first half. Some fucker trod on Danny’s foot, but ref did nothing. In the 2nd half, Nach? trod on one of their players feet and they got a foul.

    Still 11 games to go, so not throwing in the towel yet – but we need to do something pretty damn quick.

  • Josif


    No, I mean “players”. Plural. I don’t think Arsene had told them to defend like school-boys or to create nothing in the final third.

    Oh, and I will repeat it: the HG-rule is crap. The Invincibles had two English defenders in the starting line-up while the talented ones higher up on the pitch were players from outside Great Britain.

  • James

    That was a joke of a performance. out done by a bunch of kids and The spuds up next – could be a demolition job

  • Strus

    Oh Dear…
    My heart is bleeding, all hope is lost at this display.
    Culture of play is not existant.
    Poor passing, poor decisions, poor movement.
    I can not see a win at WHL, not with this eleven.
    Brilliant Ozil and 10 lesser ones.
    Bellerin and Ramsey have a very poor game
    Walcott was not in the game at all, wasted place once again.

    Gabriel & Kocielny have chosen really poor in which game they do gifts.
    How on earth they did these 3 in thisgame, against such poor opposiion???
    Besides of Ozil brilliance, Arsenal failed once again at Old Trafford.
    Where and when will the points for championship be gained?
    3 points less than a seson before and 6 points less than 2 season before.

  • 5th Gen Gooner

    Same old February crumble. We bottled it today and were out classed by a bunch of kids. Will Wenger ever learn?

  • Polo

    Anyway, well done to the Manchester United kids, they played really well and had more determination. The 18 year old Rashford look like the real deal so hope it will continue for him.

  • Polo

    Here we go, the WOBs are out in force after a lost.

  • theherd

    no desire no urgency 2nd best in all areas and once again defending like the keystone was difficult to say who were kids and who was chasing the title.only silver linning in yet another embarrassing performance is its ANOTHER NAIL IN WENGERS COFFIN!!

  • Jammy J

    Why is it that 75% of the people coming on here to bitch and moan about Wenger/Arsenal, literally only ever appear after a poor result? It’s extremely pathetic that they can never offer any support or congratulations, but the second Arsenal loose, they suddenly become the most vocal part of the fan-base.

  • Sushant

    My conclusion from the game
    # too many player are playing below required level especially Walcott, Gabriel,Coq and Ramsey(too certain extent)

    # Without Per (slow and useless as per media) we lack stability at back. We need Kosh and Per or Gab and Per as our CB pairing.We need some one to clear header and organise defense like Per do

    #-Our Midfield is totally missing creaivity and control with Cazrola and Wilshere. We r too dependent on Ozil, every team come prep to stop him these days. We need some one to share creativity burden from him.we are too slow in built up in this game.

    #- The only positive for me was Ozil goal and assist. Ozil delivery from set peices is superb.

  • para

    Thumbs up for those who called it right. A well below par performance that signifies that the team has stood still.

    We were outsmarted and outplayed by a youth team, who by the way have been training in secret studying Arsenal play style, we saw the first glimpse of them in their Euafa cup match, and Arsenal did not sit up and take notice. They have created a young team and sprung it on the PL. And we thought they had stalled.

    I now see why certain people are calling for a change, we are getting more and more stagnant by the season.

    It is becoming clear that something is wrong and even a blind one can see it now.

    No matter, if the players do not take responsibility and get themselves back in the frame of mind to be winners, i am sad to say that this will continue, as those who said it before, to be a fight for 4th place.

    I am truly disappointed, not angry, not disrespectful, not calling for heads, just disappointed in the club today.

    A change must come, we can all(most) see it now, a change in Arsenal Football Club must take place this season.

    Do not ask me what must change, but a change for the better must take place, else Arsenal will not go forward.

  • Sushant

    We are 5 pt from top, we need to keep fighting.
    We still have got chance.

  • Arvind

    Honestly, I don’t think it was a lack of effort from the guys. They tried hard till the end. It just looked like nobody had a plan. I don’t think anyone completed too many sequences of passes at all, kept losing the ball and chasing. That led to more and more panic. The 3-2 is about fair to be frank.

    As usual, Cech, Monreal and Bellerin were good while the rest of them were average. Kos continued with his striding beyond the halfline and playing diagonals while Gab wasn’t too good overall, despite a few good interceptions.

    We’re missing Santi way way more than I thought we would. That coupled with no Arteta means there is no one to retain the ball in midfield. Then if we lose it up field like today, there are big downfield bursts straight down the middle with no one to slow things down.

    Then if you add Alexis being out of form, Theo looking lost, Ramsey not scoring anymore … there’s no one for Ozil to find except Welbeck and he’s just back.

    We’re not looking good. Really. Its not all lost… its still only 5 points… but we need to start scoring goals. Fast. And start playing better in open play. We need to keep the ball better. In a threatening way.. not sterile possession like at the start of the first half.

    While United won today, it wasn’t that they outplayed us. We just made awful awful defensive errors. Why did we lose the ball on the 1st goal? Why did the right back put a cross in? What was Gabriel trying to do? And why was Herrera practically strolling into the box for the 3rd goal?

    Oh well. It happens. But we’re running out of time. Hope we get better. Fast. : (

  • Arvind

    I meant sterile posession at the start of the second half.. sorry

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    Fabianski’s Swansea are our mid-week opponents in the BPL. But will the now low in coffidence Arsenal beat them? Very difficult to say because of the stuttering performances by the Gunners in their recent games has made me not to put my hand on my chest that Arsenal will win the game. Talkless to say we can beat Spurs,save if a miracle happens
    Let’s wait and see if Arsenal will do it.

  • yj

    Maybe some of these players are not just winners. They have bottled so many good chances to lead the title charge this season.It even looks as if there is no real desire to win this league. If they had lost after putting in a good performance, I can understand, and I would have had hope that with that kind of performance, we would have luck on our side next time.But this performance was flat and awful. Only Ozil and Welbeck deserve any kind of credit in this game.Sanchez lost form at the worst possible time, Walcott goes missing as he always does when played as a striker(he is not a striker and should be content playing on the wings), Ramsey?(no comment),Gabriel is rash and always looks error prone. I see desire in Ozil’s eyes,and not in the eyes of some others(maybe because he was used to winning in Madrid!)Being beaten by this United weakened side is shameful, it seems there is a mental block this team has when playing some teams(man u at old trafford, and Chelsea). Just as Jon Champion said at the end of the match ‘Arsene Wenger cannot just beat any team man u puts out at Old trafford’, 2006 was the last time we won there.Maybe Wenger needs a shrink to get rid of some of these mental blockages because he has had various teams over the years and they all seem to be affected with these mental blockages(players have come and gone, but Wenger has been the only constant).

  • yinks

    Maybe some of these players are not just winners. They have bottled so many good chances to lead the title charge this season.It even looks as if there is no real desire to win this league. If they had lost after putting in a good performance, I can understand, and I would have had hope that with that kind of performance, we would have luck on our side next time.But this performance was flat and awful. Only Ozil and Welbeck deserve any kind of credit in this game.Sanchez lost form at the worst possible time, Walcott goes missing as he always does when played as a striker(he is not a striker and should be content playing on the wings), Ramsey?(no comment),Gabriel is rash and always looks error prone. I see desire in Ozil’s eyes,and not in the eyes of some others(maybe because he was used to winning in Madrid!)Being beaten by this United weakened side is shameful, it seems there is a mental block this team has when playing some teams(man u at old trafford, and Chelsea). Just as Jon Champion said at the end of the match ‘Arsene Wenger cannot just beat any team man u puts out at Old trafford’, 2006 was the last time we won there.Maybe Wenger needs a shrink to get rid of some of these mental blockages because he has had various teams over the years and they all seem to be affected with these mental blockages(players have come and gone, but Wenger has been the only constant).

  • Samrat Jha

    hey guys, still 11 games to go. we have had a blip and still only 5 points is the gap. Leicester, spurs will slip up.

  • hrishi

    Well done to United- I have often used injuries as a reason to excuse some of our losses in previous seasons. Hence, for that United team to beat our team of seasoned pros must have taken some doing.
    Missed the first half entirely, so cant really comment about the Rashford penalty/red card claims. But I found little wrong with Pawson’s second half performance- at least from an Arsenal perspective. Many people over here might disagree- but making the referees and PGMOL scapegoats for every sub-par Arsenal performance does little to improve their chance of being taken seriously.
    He could have easily sent Ramsey off if he wanted to screw us over.

    Its certainly a missed opportunity, but not the end of our title challenge (or the world 🙂 ). While Walter may have been a little too optimistic about being top next weekend- we can certainly make a strong claim for second place by then, given that Spurs visit West Ham midweek.

  • Josif

    @yj- maybe Ozil’s eyes have more with the fact he had won more games at OT than lost prior to today.

  • bjtgooner

    I really detest losing to the Manures & today they were there for the taking, for some reason we did not play as if we believed in ourselves.

    I don’t know if our confidence has been knocked by so many ref inspired poor results or what, but today we gifted the match to a poor and undeserving Manure team. Very disappointing.

    There is much work to be done to get this team back on track.

  • mojola

    Wenger gets all the stick,i wonder how he still defends this kind of performance from the players.really hope a miracle can get our season back on track, starting from Wednesday. If arsenal players can not repay the faith wenger has shown in them last summer despite the abuse he gets for believing in his team,he should Mk them realize he can’t continue to tolerate this kinda performances

  • John

    As many have quoted on other sites along with pundits and press ,as long as Arsene Wenger is the manager of Arsenal club we will never win the PL again and definitely wont win the champions league.Our failings in these 2 top competitions have been repeated year after year after year and one could almost write the script to the day.Its ok for wenger to talk about togetherness ,mental toughness and belief but we have none of that.we have weak players being led by a weak manager and its about time some of the brainwashed on here come to terms with that.Tactically we are outdone regularly in the league and europe by younger more astute coaches who offer a new fresh approach to the game .Tactics and the way the game is played has changed ,its just a shame our once great manager cant change also.

  • porter

    I wouldn’t call LVG young but certainly their youth wanted it more than our more established journeymen. There does seem to be an air of complacency about the club and quite where that comes from is a subject for discussion from both supporters and more importantly those around London Colney.

  • Tasos

    Yes we were poor. We lacked in many departments on the day and in no way was the referee anything to do with this defeat at all.

    However nothing is lost yet. It is all still to play for. Yes we must perform much better but we can and we will.

    Arsenal are still in this tittle race but they must start performing like contenders again.

  • dan

    Question – how many believe we will win PL?

  • porter

    Not me for 1 , I never thought we would , I hoped , still do but that’s about it.

  • Jerry

    The players weren’t up to it today, maybe the mental effects from the Barcelona game. They just have to put it behind them and focus on the rest of the games.

    Pawson was ok as ref overall, but did miss the red card and penalty for the handball by Rashford at the end of the first half which was a game changer. Would have been 2-2 (assuming the penalty went in) and against 10 men United for 45+ minutes.

    Not to take anything away from United, they played great today and capitalized on our mistakes, but some people need to stop acting like these were all kids they put out there. In the starting lineup, the only kid out there was Rashford (18), then Varela & Depay (22), Lingard (23) and the rest of the team was 25+ years old (Rojo, De Gea, Carrick, Blind, Mata, Herrera, Schneiderlin).

    Arsenal had Bellerin (20), Coquelin (24), and majority between 25-27 (Gabriel, Welbeck, Ramsey, Sanchez, Özil, & Walcott). Tough game to take, but the club just has to put it behind them as soon as possible and try to get max points in the upcoming games.

  • Menace

    dan – Question – do you support Arsenal?

    If you do then you must believe we will win everything until it is not possible,

    If you don’t believe then you are not a supporter but a follower.

  • Tasos


    The bookmakers still believe Arsenal have a very good chance.

    And they’re payed to form a considered, rational opinion.

    Yes its difficult to comprehend that thought just now but sometimes we (fans) need to take a step back and keep things in perspective.

    There’s still a good probability Arsenal will win the league.

  • Menace

    Jerry – I love the ‘miss the penalty’. He saw it but didn’t give it because of a flea in his ear.

  • Mandy Dodd

    There are days when the team just seem to go out of their way to try and prove to critics AAA media , those who say Wenger doesn’t do defence, and haters have a point.Today was one of those days. Very hard to defend the defensive lapses, slowness, predictability, a number of players out of form.
    Let’s face it, this team are in a bit of a funk at the moment. Mistakes at the back are being seriously punished, there have been games when we have not been so great up front. I think we are suffering a bit of delayed reaction from the injury crisis.
    Yes, the haters , including those on here who only appear on here when we do badly are having their day in the sun. Let them I say. There is a way to go, a lot can change, but let’s just get behind the team and help them out of this starting with the Swansea game.
    We should be beating Hull, as well as the team Utd put out, but for some reason, we are not, and the team have not looked their true selves for a while now. But bad spells happen to all teams. They are not done yet.

  • dan

    I’m just asking, I want to get an idea.

  • Josif

    I don’t blame Arsene for what happened on the pitch but I blame him for saying stupid thing after the game like:

    “They had a few millions on the pitch today. From De Gea to their whole midfield who were experienced. They spent a lot of money on it.”

    If he’s serious, then it means spending money on the new players equals success. If that’s true, then he made a mistake for not spending money. It’s either you have a cake or eat it.

    Either way, he should have given more credit to United and his rival on their bench. Whenever our 8:2 defeat was brought up, I always recited our absentees (Sagna, Vermaelen, Gibbs, Song, Frimpong while Arteta and Mertesacker hadn’t been our players yet) as the main reason for our defeat. Maybe I should have joined the attacks on Wenger and Arsenal as we had “a few millions on the pitch” and “experienced players” like Arshavin, Rosicky and Van Persie.

  • Menace

    dan – I got money on Arsenal to win the EPL. I backed them at the start of the season at 10 to 1. I know it is a difficult task because of the officiating.

    Traffic on a road can slow you down but policing can stop you on an empty road.

    Each little decision has its effect & over the season the lovely people at the PGMO win loads.

    I don’t care about the likes of John & his ilk. I will still wake up every morning knowing that football is corrupt as long as the FA & PGMO exist in their current unaccountable state. I have seen the beautiful game in its honesty & see it now in its vile form of professional cheating.

  • dan

    fair enough.

  • stevo433

    Mandy, we have far too many days in the sun.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Stevo , and we have a lot more under Wenger than when I started supporting Arsenal…..

  • Josif

    @dan – I believe we can win the league. This team didn’t forget to play football over night even if the players are doing their best to convince us otherwise.

  • Menace

    Josif – you pick on ‘the millions’ but miss out on the ‘little free kicks in midfield’. Both were true statements. Wenger cannot say United played a reasonably strong team with ‘professional fouling’ to stop our game aided & abetted by tidy officiating. Consistent & serial fouling stopped us several times, but the stats will not show it because not all the fouls were given.
    Let’s just accept the WOBs Pawson was OK & it was a fairly officiated game & move on to the next ‘fairly officiated game’. It wasn’t fairly officiated. It can never be when the PGMO are involved.

    Fair officiating? Why can we not hear what the referees say to each other? is it so secret? It must be because in Rugby it is broadcast on radio available at each match.

  • dan

    I get the feeling if we blow it this year, he will shop some of players.

  • Rana

    Dan, I think if he blows the title this year the fans will go ape.

  • Jerry

    What was wrong with the statement in regards to millions spent by United? The media in every other occasion equates high transfer fees with quality players. The cost of the United midfield:

    Depay – £25 mil
    Schneiderlin- £24 mil
    Herrera £29 mil
    Mata £37.1mil

    De Gea ~£19 mil,
    Rojo- £16 mil
    Blind- £14 mil
    Carrick- 18.6 mil

    I think Wenger was giving them more credit by saying they are quality players.

    You mentioned the 8:2 game and mentioned the few millions, the whole starting lineup in that game cost £51 mil and was significantly younger than this United team!

    8 out of the 11 players starting were under 25 and 6 of them were under 22 (Szczęsny- 21 yo, Jenkinson 19 yo and dismissed at the 75′, Ramsey- 20 yo, Coquelin- 20 yo, Walcott- 22yo, Traore- 21 yo)! That was a very young team which played a man down for the last 15+ minutes also like this 2016 United team should have for the last 45 minutes.

    Yeah, I was struggling to find a neutral word for the penalty that Pawson ignored.

  • Menace

    dan – whatever happens this year, there will be some contract terminations & transfers. Same for most clubs.

  • I reckon Stephen Hawking would have had a better game than most of our players today,

  • Jammy J

    @ Menace – You cannot blame corrupt refereeing on every single loss. All you are really doing is taking away from our credibility when we genuinely are robbed because of corrupt refereeing (which incidentally does happen far too often, but in this game, it simply wasn’t the case).

    When you place the blame of the loss, solely on the referee who in this instance was perfectly acceptable, it gives your complaints no real substance when we do actually get shafted by corrupt reffing, as it just shows your huge bias. Take the AAA for example; they complain literally all the time, at everything and anything involving Arsenal. Because of this, when they do extremely rarely voice a valid complaint, you just ignore it because you know 99% of the time, what they are coming out with is completely unsubstantiated rubbish.

  • Menace

    dan – whatever happens this year, there will be some contract terminations & transfers. Same for most clubs.

    Under Wenger, Arsenal has made huge profits from the game compared to most other clubs because of League position & Champions League qualification. The FA cup victories have added to that. This has allowed for the phenominal infrastructure projects that have made the club such a big Brand. Without WEnger the Brand will lose its appeal.

  • dan

    Absolutely, however, I do think some players are far too comfortable/predictable, the same face which spend much time on the injury table, and imploding with same problems.

  • Florian

    I managed to put a still on the penalty claim in the 45+2 minute. To me it’s clear that the United player makes a move with his shoulder towards the ball, and the ball ends up hitting his forearm. The ref had an unobstructed view and should have awarded the penalty and the red card.

  • David Hillier's Suitcase

    I think Graham Souness’s assessment of our performance was spot on.Embarrassing,insipid,weak,pathetic but most definitely,predictable.
    The spiral continues and will do so,until Kroenke clears off.

  • Menace

    Jammy J – I dont blame refereeing for loss. I blame them for everything bad in the game. They cheat us just as they cheat some others. They cheat when we win & when we lose. Thats why I always say we win despite them. Referees facilitate the teams they support & just like parents protect them. However, this is a financial environment & these guys are in it solely for the money. There is very little love for the game from these parasites. Like the agents they suck the blood out of this game I love. I hope it gets cleaned up & saved for my grandchildren.

  • Menace

    Florian – you must be wrong because Michael Owen said his arm was in a natural position & the referee was right not to give it (aren’t they always?). He was grinning like the preverbial Cheshire cat.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Dan 8.09, maybe you are right, for all we know, players know things we do not…. but until then, we can only back the team as he plays it.
    The main problem with this team is that we don’t have a Cazorla….makes us slower and more predictable, teams can attack us in a more relaxed manner…..even lesser teams….knowing we have less threat. We are also easier to defend against without such a player.
    Arsenal without Cazorla, Jack or even Rosicky is a lesser team….as we have seen . No shortage of chances, but….This is something for Wenger to think about in the summer, Caz will stay , TR will reportedly go. Jack will presumably stay, but Wenger needs to think very carefully about this role….and effective cover for it, or alter the team play.
    I always knew Caz is good, but now realising just how good he actually is.

  • dan

    Agree with most if not all, I do think JW will not be sufficient his injury record really is following the path of Walcott, Walcott is below expectations.

  • Graham

    I dont know whether we should have had a penalty on half time because Sky have not shown one replay of it.

  • Mark

    Just seen a quick 6 second video of the handball, very similar to Bruce last week except it was slightly quicker and closer but he definitely moves his arm to the ball, on the goal line. Penalty, red card.

  • Mark

    Posted on twitter

  • para

    Well the level of positivity here today is well below what one normally sees.

    I wonder why? It’s starting to sink in that we are too predictable.

    I wonder if anyone noticed the passing of the video to VanGaal at the beginning of the match from Giggs? Watch the way it was done. Then the image was shown again, i dont know what the commentators were saying, i had the sound down.

    Then VanGaal falling down suggesting it was a dive?

    Pure theatricals from a manager who it seems have now won the hearts of the media.

    Then the refs were actually quite fair in the match.

    I think they all were laughing at Arsenal today in a well planned stich-up.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Dan, think Walcott….and for that matter, Alexis is suffering because we are not getting the ball to them quickly enough to take advantage of their pace. Our balls to them are too predictable for them to function properly. Ramsey ….and Alexis are trying to do too much …and things not suited to them to compensate, and exhausting themselves in the process.
    The key to all this is Caz. But, like Jack, he is weeks away, and will take four or five games to get back to his best.
    Arteta in his better days could have been useful here as well…but ultimately, we are without Arteta, Caz, Jack, Rosicky. And now to a lesser extent in that role, Chamberlain. No wonder our forward players are suffering without these creative transition players, and I repeat, Ramsey cannot do it all.
    Of course a critic can blame Wenger for relying on such injury prone, and aging players in such a pivotal role, but up until recently, Caz has been very robust.
    Sorry about the layman tactics, but convinced that is the route of the problem. Cazorla injury. This will be very serious food for thought for Wenger in the summer, especially should a number of unpalatable imponderables come to pass this season, which if they happen will invite some seriously unwanted pressure……and of course pure hatred.
    But we can do nothing about that, just hope they find a solution, confidence, get players back and others falter.

  • gouresh

    might get thumbs down but really don’t care. What i noticed today was that manure kids had high intensity and did not allow us any time on the ball. From what I know about football is that in such a situation u don’t run with the ball. U play simple but quick passes and keep the opposition moving around. But we did the complete opposite. Running with it, making difficult passes trying to use upper body strength when not required and loosing the ball. Many a times instead of passing in the front, the ball was passed back because no one was willing to drop and collect the ball.
    The track back from some of our players was non existent. The attitude of the players to was wanting. I really hope this result in a kicking in their bottom and they wake up and sort things out.

  • Pat

    I agree, Arsene Wenger was right to mention the cost of Man U’s players and the niggly fouls in the middle of the park.

    In addition, there was the failure to give us a penalty. We hardly ever get penalties. It is scarcely fair. As usual we have to contend with more than other teams.

    Apart from that, Arsene Wenger and Petr Cech are right to say we just have to bounce back in the next match. We are still third and only five points off the top. Anything can happen.

  • Pat

    And by the way, the like buttons aren’t working so I agree with a lot of what people have said.

  • Ando

    We have become so predictable in our build-up play, everyone has rumbled us.
    The skill level is just not there, I’m afraid. No self belief. Mr Wenger made a huge error in denying what the world can see – the Gunners have become serial chokers. Never mind all these precious stats about ‘key pass completion’ and ‘ possession’ – the one stat that counts is the score at the end of the game.
    I will always want the Gunners to do well but -seriously, guys- are any of us convinced by these team performances ?
    I don’t even enjoy watching them on MoTD (my only source – I cannot afford to go the the Ems and I don’t have the smarts to watch it online) anymore, even if they win.
    I watched the Spurs v Fiorentina game the othernight and found it enthralling and exciting. And even after 85 mins and 3-0 up, Spurs defence was disciplined and their midfield broke with purpose and conviction.
    I enjoy a good game of football, whoever is playing. It says something that my own team no longer delivers in this respect.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Seems like a Spurs fan has got a bit lost

  • Col


    “This has allowed for the phenominal infrastructure projects that have made the club such a big Brand.” – so having a nice training ground brings in the support around the world? What a lot of nonsense. Winning the PL would ‘improve the brand far more than having lots of money in the bank ever will.

    “Without WEnger the Brand will lose its appeal.” – entirely depends on who he is replaced with. The brand is ‘losing its appeal’ right effectively even with Wenger at the moment.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Does anyone have any theories… are Leicester avoiding injuries to key players….any at all…in any cases…..whatsoever?

  • Mandy Dodd

    Col, the brand is expanding worldwide. Supporters are increasing, as are commercials. Take your point the brand might not ultimately be Wenger dependant in years to come…..but cannot see any evidence the brand is losing its appeal worldwide?

  • DayDreamer

    I am not sure what to think but after the Barcelona game I sat down and wondered how many of our players wouldn’t get into a team that makes last 8 in that competition year in year out we have so many players that are below the required standard.
    last 8 every year might say you have a chance of winning your domestic league.
    Arteta, Rosiscky, Flamini, Elneny, Awobi, cambell, oxelade chamberlain, sonogo… wouldnt have a hope of ever playing for the top clubs in england never mind europe.

    WE need to start upgrading this summer with the extra cash or that predictability will remain.

    Arsenal have become stale and predictable I would love to see wenger succeed but placing to much faith in a lot of these wont help his cause

  • Crovax

    Looked a deadset penalty both live and in my own slow motion. The fact that it was not replayed a single time by my Fox Sports feed in Australia (Sky?), nor subsequently mentioned again by the commentators, makes it a certain penalty in my opinion.

    2-2 and a red card changes everything. I’m not for one second excusing our shambolic defending and overall play, by the way.

  • para

    Jammy J
    February 28, 2016 at 5:00 pm

    Why is it that 75% of the people coming on here to bitch and moan about Wenger/Arsenal, literally only ever appear after a poor result?

    Because after a performance(one that shows no growth) like this, the “only positives” can not really say anything. It is not the result, but the determination, will and fight of the team that causes the critic.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    I do hope that we shake this off and get back to winning ways . An overall poor and lethargic display . Am not sure what ails the players , but they have to buck up real soon .

    I do hope to see Campbell back in the team . At least he keeps chasing back . Some of them were just strolling yesterday . Walcott was a no show . Was hoping that with his speed he could run behind their patch up defence , but not seen that for quite a long time .

    Come on guys , do your stuff . Up the Gunners !

  • Florian


    I know 🙂 Who am I to argue with the ultimate expert that is Michael Owen? His opinion surely has a solid foundation since he knows it on his own skin (well, almost). The moment when Henchoz handballed near his post in the 2001 FA Cup final is a case in point.

    Oh the irony.

  • John

    1.We cant compete with oil money.
    2.The referees are out there to make sure we dont win the league..
    Well thats two excuses you can no longer use for us bottling it again in the league.I wonder which other myths will be discarded before this groundhog season finishes and people start to wake up and smell the coffee.
    Everyone could see and predicted what would happen with our season before a ball was even kicked.And to top it all off Wenger cant use our players as an excuse because there was money there to spend but he said this squad of players was good enough.Well they probably were Arsene its just a shame you aren’t anymore and tactics and philosophys which once worked over a decade ago do not work now.Times change ,football changes ,shame you cant change too.8million plus to make the same mistakes season after season after season..

  • Ando

    Mandy Dodd @11.12 pm

    No, not a Spurs supporter – just using our local rivals as an example of purposeful, organised, disciplined play. Much as it pains me to note this, it is all too clear to anyone who enjoys football that “they” have got it and ” we” haven’t. Something is not clicking at Arsenal, I don’t pretend to know what it is (unlike some) but I can still see what my eyes tell me.
    Just because I have been a Gooner since 1963 and think that Mr. Wenger has been a great manager for Arsenal does not mean that I cannot be disappointed by the behaviour of the team and some of the individuals within it. That is all we can go on – their behaviour. Everything else is speculation

  • John

    But you have to ask yourself will things change…No because Wenger is under no pressure to win the league.He must be the only manager in 92 clubs that does not have to win.Sure he might be under pressure if he doesnt make the top 4 because of the champions league and the money that generates but as long as he makes our billionaire a profit the board are happy with him.Players have left this club over tha last 10 years or so,some very good ones and some world class ones.Some might say that some have left for more money but i can assure you that a lot have left because they have ambition to win trophys and didnt see what was promised to us when we left highbury for the emirates, and that was to compete with the best clubs in europe. Sadly we are a million miles from that promise and are getting further away..

  • Polo

    No tactical change? I must have missed seeing Arsenal playing deep counter-attack games in the past. Was it the Arsenal of old playing against Manchester City, Bayern Munich, or Barcelona?

    John since you’re a football genius, there’s a £8 million reason to get into football management, show AW how it’s done.

  • dan

    Wenger puts his faith in players who just aren’t ready for a fight.

  • dan

    We have great nucleus for team, but, some individuals just can’t contribute, it is disheartening to witness the fall.

  • Oliver

    It just wasn’t a particularly good performance and we paid for it.
    Walcott and Sanchez are not really in form
    Ramsey doesn’t control the play like Cazorla does and isn’t making up for it by being a goal threat.

    I didn’t fully understand the logic for leaving out Mertersacker.

    On the plus side it’s nice to have Welbeck back.

  • rich

    Mandy Dodd (I’ll jump in on your injury question so I can avoid thinking about the game a bit longer)

    First thing for Leicester is that they are playing less games.

    Second is that maybe it helps at least a little to play in a fairly regimented way. All know their jobs very well, making familiar movements most of the time, maybe that is a bit less stressful on the body.

    Third and a big one, don’t think they have many players who are very vulnerable to kicks. Football is very asymmetrical in that way, with a lot of the dirtiest dogs, especially defenders, being very rarely exposed to late or dangerous kicks-either from behind, when releasing the ball, dribbling, or when going in for direct 50-50’s- themselves. It’s only Mahrez and Vardy I can think of who are very vulnerable to fouls in their team, and the latter is a wily git who knows how to protect himself well. We have a lot of players who are vulnerable to kicks/fouls and a couple whose play reflects a fear of the dangers.

    Must also be a great help that few of their players have heavy schedules of international football with many- Huth, morgan, Drinkwater, Kante, Simpson, Albrighton- playing none at all.

    Still leaves you wondering quite how they have managed to transform Huth from a guy with a patchy injury record which was worsening badly to someone who can play every single game. Luck or great work on the fitness side, or both I guess.

  • Gar

    To be honest I think what we have missed the most lately is Santiago and Jack perhaps even Arteta – players who can receive the ball under pressure and retain it either by wriggling free (Santi), commiting the opposition and breaking the lines (Jack) or playing the smart passes (Arteta) these three are also aware of their defensive responsibilities and are less likely to leave Le Coq doing it all himself. Santi and Jack also bring an unpredictable element that we have been sorely lacking of late.

  • proudkev

    We played with no tempo and we were slinging the ball sideways a lot. Cazorla has been such a massive loss because he made us tick. I admire Ramsey for his bravery and the effort he puts in but I am afraid he’s not creative enough in that CM position. He gets caught in possession too often for me and has a tendecncy to play blind balls. As for Theo, he has zero confidence and his touch was terrible yesterday. Sanchez too shows great desire but his finishing has deserted him.

    Too many players performing below what we expect and it’s the lack of confidence that’s worrying me, because that’s a difficult thing to improve over night you have to play into it.

    Make no mistakes, we really do need to sort this out. Manchester Utd were poor and they were there for the taking. Spurs will be a lot tougher and that game now looks like a real six pointer. Spurs and Leicester have some tough games coming up, plus the added pressure expectation brings, so it’s still up for grabs. But we’ve really got to improve quickly.

  • proudkev

    “I didn’t fully understand the logic for leaving out Mertersacker”.

    Me neither, his organisation and reading of the game is exceptional. Unfortunately, he was been used as a scapegoat by a lot of people who seem to be obsessed about ‘pace’ and don’t quite understand what he brings. I suspect playing 3 games in a week is too much for him because he should have started.

  • Mandy Dodd

    In that case, apologies Ando.
    You are right, something is not clicking, still think it is the Cazorla issue….affecting the whole team. Plus perhaps a few leadership issues on the pitch , especially in the absence of the regular captain, and in yesterdays case, the vice captain. The keeper is a leader, but not sure he can affect the MF or attack so much…mind you, the defence has made serious mistakes in recent games as well. At the risk of sounding like a media hound, leadership may be one of the issues Wenger will have to address to move forward, especially if Arteta does go this summer.
    Agree with all of your points Rich, and the luck issues as well,and yes, Leicester do get their share of luck on a few fronts though can only give immense credit to their medics. But if they go all season without any injury to speak of to a key player, I think we need to start poaching their medics as well as their scouts. Again, Spurs, apart from recently Verthongen and Dembele, they have experienced very few injuries to key players, despite what is reportedly a brutal training regime

  • Mandy Dodd

    Excellent points Proudkev. Agree on Ramsey, no coincidence that Wenger plays him off to the right when everyone is available. Confidence is a clear issue at the moment…i wonder if leadership is as well with MA and Per missing. The way this team are set up to play, confidence is a more important factor than at other teams with perhaps a more solid, but ultimately basic philosphy…less spectacular than Arsenal in full flow, but more reliable when things go wrong.
    Hopefully Per will be back at the weekend

  • Menace

    Col – do you think for one moment that Wenger does not want to win the Pemier League? It is so easy to do just look at the teams that have won it. I am tired of reading simple minded drivel about what Wenger should do. Write about something that you have done that makes a case to accept your brilliance.

    The Arsenal brand has grown because of consistency of playing attractive football. Victories will come in due course. Just learn to accept your position in the hierarchy of things. It is so easy to assume leadership hidden at home.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Worrying, even Arseblog seems to have turned.

  • rich

    Excellent points Proudkev.

    Afraid I’m struggling to generate any optimism at all.

    Take Wilshere out of the equation, which is reasonably fair as he hasn’t played this year and wasn’t an instrumental part of the successful team in the 2nd half of last year, and I think we had just the one key player unavailable, Cazorla. Therefore it really was brutal to struggle so badly against the current Utd without three certain starters (four if you include Shaw) and another 4 or 5 who would be in contention.

    Brutal. The big problem for me is that while some of the performance was down to many players being bang out of form, some to individual mistakes (though I couldn’t spot too much of that, aside from what looked a nervy and poor clearance for first and inept defending for 2nd) a great deal of it looked like inherent flaws.

    For the vast majority of the game, I had no idea how those personnel on the pitch should approach whether or not to push or stay back, and unfortunately I believe that reflected the reality for the players out there.

    In order to have a reasonable chance of protecting the defence, we basically needed Ramsey to sit alongside Coquelin and for the defence to be set and organised. That would then place nearly all the attacking onus on the four of Ozil, Sanchez, Walcott and Welbeck. Four players with a lot of attributes between them but some serious compatibility issues and question marks i have no answer to about how they should have positioned themselves on the pitch- sitting deep to break? Staying high? Mixed? And that’s before thinking of who is likely to provide the links to them.

    I believe Gabriel got the nod, to my approval I admit, because of an understanding of the difficulties in getting the attack and midfield functioning going forward, i.e Ramsey and the full backs would probably be necessary to succeed in attack and so we could expect the defence to be exposed to breaks at times.

    I’ll complete my ignominy of seemingly jumping with both feet from largely optimism and positivity to utter doom and gloom by picking on Walcott. That’s not the truth of the matter, more like I usually try to rein in my negative side and convince myself it goes too far or that it’s simply better not to express it, but today I am giving in and letting the negativity free. A dubious thing to do when silence is surely the noble thing in this situation.

    Severely criticising Walcott is like kicking Bambi repeatedly in the head but my honest opinion is that much of the criticism is completely unfair. Theo is what he is, excellent in certain situations, painfully vulnerable in others. I don’t blame him or the manager any more for that than I do Michael Owen or his managers for being so great at what he was good at, so mediocre at all the rest.

    However, for the team it means that in a game where there are few or none of the situations Theo excels in and lots of those which he is poor at we are presented with a big problem. Plug that into yesterday’s team and it doesn’t look like malfunctioning players but rather a set of individuals who were in real danger of performing exactly as they did together.

    I could never have predicted Cazorla’s loss would affect us this badly, and would have chosen Coquelin or Kos as The Man Who Cannot Be Injured. That shows me I’ll presumably never understand exactly how a team functions.

  • Fishpie

    Mandy, I agree Cazola is a big miss. A wonderful footballer, a joy.
    So yes without him, we are not as good. But how Arsene is not able to create a fighting team spirit nonetheless or any kind of effective team strategy is simply beyond me. A team spirit will at least get fans admiring the effort and a realistic team strategy gives you a chance of competing. I got the impression for large parts of the game that Ozil, Alexis and Theo just goal-hanged. They just waited up the pitch looking to Ramsey and the fullbacks to make all the running and to try and get through United’s midfield on their own. Only Wellbeck put in any kind work ethic performance further back.

  • Fishpie

    Also Mandy, your point about Arseblog. Like Untold, although he has his moans, his centre of gravity is normally positivism. He creates an up spirit and contributes to the enjoyment of following Arsenal. But who can blame him for being critical? And yes, following the weekend, he went as far as suggesting Arsene’s days are numbered. He hasn’t given up complete hope but he is I think reflecting what many non AAA fans will be thinking. Eventually even the most positive, patient, reasonable and analytical person will come to see the deeper flaws if they persist. And they do persist.

  • Mandy Dodd

    There is another player we really miss, one not mentioned that much any more, and have not fully replaced since his body has started letting him down at this level…Arteta.
    Tactically and technically astute, streetwise, has played under widely different managers and styles, versatile, someone the players clearly look up to, a player who led by example, could set the tempo and organise the team. These players are missing such a figure.
    If he is no longer able to play at this level, really hope he is found a place on the coaching team. Do not want to second guess Wenger this summer, but we are sorely missing the leadership skills of such a player.The setup these days relies to a greater extent on individual intelligence and freedom of thought than some teams I could mention, including a couple who sit above us, when it goes well, we are unplayable, when it goes wrong…..well…yesterday. But having a player like Arteta, in his prime helps stop it going wrong.
    Dont think these players lack fight or spirit, more organisation on the pitch, and increasingly, as others have posted, confidence. And that is worrying.
    Maybe Wenger did take too much of a gamble in relying on the likes of MA and TR, but it does show how much he rates them.
    Should Wenger choose to bring in such a figure, I wish him luck, not so many around.

  • proudkev


    Carrying the ball through the lines is a problem for us. In the past this was a massive strength.

    Santi excelled in that, he could nick the ball and quickly set up an attack, running past people. Jack can do this do too. But Ramsey can’t, he’s not that kind of player. Ramsey works hard for the team, so I am not picking on him, simply stating that I’m not convinced of him being a creative player in CM. I suspect this is whay Wenger was playing him wide, despite FFM’s saying his should be playing centrally.

    In central positions we lack penetration. All teams have to do is defend deep against us to stop us passing between the lines and we struggle. It’s not easy to break down teams who defend deep in numbers, so you need to be able to break on them quickly and run through the lines, when they do commit. But on Saturday we just passed in front of Man Utd. This is what happens when players lack confidence, they are scared to give the ball away and make pooor movements.

    The only ball carriers we have are Sanchez and Welbeck who are playing up front (Welbeck has looked impressive!). Ozil is ploughing a lone field because he really is the only one creating chances, a lot of which are from dead balls.

    The negative in me says unless we get Santi or Jack back quickly, it could be too late. The positive in me says if Sanchez finds his shooting boots and Danny continues to be a threat, we can turn this around. But we are running out of games, so we need a win against the Swans to give us confidence for what is now a very big game at the 55ers.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Fishpie, agree, Arseblog has always seemed pretty reasonable most times to me. I know he has no influence on Wenger or the board, but he is a bit of a barometer.
    The team have to get out of this funk and quickly

  • Mandy Dodd

    Kev, think if anything, Ramseys work ethic andd energy levels mean he is trying to do too much. Tim Stillman said this week, he was trying to do about 3 different jobs.
    He looked pretty exhausted yesterday, mentally as much as physically.
    We really need Jack and Santi, but it is going to take time. Jack is a strange one- wonder why a hairline fracture has taken so long…even with surgery….just worry there may be more going on there

  • ob1977

    2 things I have confirmed after watching that game:

    1) I shouldn’t manage Arsenal as I wanted and was happy when Gabriel started, but he was largely at fault for Utd’s first two goals, and The BFG would quite probably have dealt with them both.

    2) Ramsey offers absolutely nothing at the moment other than running around, I had high hopes for him when Santi got injured, but if he isn’t scoring then he is showing nothing else about his game.

    Am not giving up on Ramsey, this season has been a massive let down from him and The Ox, they are quality players but it’s just not happening, throw in Walcott, and Sanchez on that list and you might see why we may fall short again this season, still time to turn it around though and hopefully Welbeck can get us some momentum and belief as he has not been affected by our slumber.

  • ob1977

    I am wondering who all these kids are I keep hearing about, De Gea? Varela? Carrick? Blind? Rojo? Scneiderlain? Mata? Even Memphis? All signed for big bucks and or experienced, onl Rashford falls under the kid category, maybe lingard. Yes we were poor but we were hardly playing against an U21 side!

  • rich


    Agree with all that. Aside from the hopes for Santi and Jack to be back very soon, I think it’s as you say and we need Sanchez to be at his best and Welbeck to build on the very good return he has made.

    Sure you can tell from my morale level that I don’t feel there’s a great chance of that happening.

    I’ve a nasty feeling that both players and manager are now uncertain about how to approach things. We moved to a near full commitment to countering football for a select few games- the very hardest ones- but not for games outside that category; yet, in many games, we’re not really committed to trying to dominate possession. What are we currently?

    Yesterday looks like it may have been a near perfect game for bringing that uncertainty to the fore: stick, twist, push, sit; I could hardly detect any instances of the players getting it badly wrong in that regard, and yet we didn’t look right at all as a team. That’s what made it so brutal for me.

    I’m left with the curious thought that if a fresh Arsene Wenger was parachuted into the club around Christmas, with no investment in the players or strong allegiances to them, he would have been able to take advantage of temporarily eased pressure and expectations, the new manager’s grace period, and would likely have settled on a different setup to the one we currently play. I really fear that a very bad end to this year would see Wenger- after the honest reviews I have always believed he makes and has always judged correctly- decide against continuing.

    If that fate is avoided, I’m convinced he will make some brutally hard calls. If not immediate sales then a signing or three who closes down the opportunities available for some players who he has refused to block off too much until now.

    For now, everything myst be crossed that we can pull something together in these remaining games and enjoy a huge upturn in individual form with some large helpings of luck to boot.

    I’ve had no inclination to discuss the ref, who was much better than I expected and maybe even quite good (though i did completely lose track on the issue of repeated fouls), but it is worth mentioning that the incident on half time was the type on which games can swing totally. Over the years it was so common for Utd especially, but other contenders, too, to see such a decision go there way and turn a bad game/score on its head.

    Forget the game, in a way, how unbelievable is it for Sky to, apparently, not even show a good replay of that incident! That is mind-boggling selectivity or bias against us.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Sky…they have always had a bit of a thing for Utd, so I wouldnt expect much from them.
    I would be surprised if Wenger were to make such a decision Rich, he is many things, but certainly not a quitter when the going is tough.
    I do however see your point. The fact is, that should things go wrong, and we finish below Leicester, Spurs or heaven forbid, both, Wenger will face some very awkward questions..perhaps on his recruitment, cover for the inevitable injuries, on pitch leadership, motivation skills
    This would be perhaps harsh for all he has done for the club…so his best course of action is to avoid the scenario…now and in the future!

  • Col


    My mistake. I didn’t realise that when you said the brand has grown because of “phenominal infrastructure projects” (sic) you were actually talking about “consistency of playing attractive football.” Clearly we don’t understand English the same way.

    I would argue that the Arsenal ‘brand’ did most of its growing off the back of the team 10+ years ago, which not only played some of most attractive football ever seen in this country, but also occasionally won the league – and was always ‘in the mix’. I am also fully aware that was the team Wenger built.

    We were perhaps spoilt by years of success, standing toe to toe with Manchester United at the height of their powers, and if not always winning then at least competing. The ‘brand’ was built too on the Graham years, when if not the most beautiful football was at least reflective of a resolute, die-hard spirit that seems to be largely lacking these days – and Wenger’s early days had in buckets.

    I don’t know why Wenger cannot seem to repeat the success he had a decade (or more) ago, and wouldn’t presume (as you assume) to try and tell him how to do so. But after yet another limp capitulation and missed opportunity to seize the initiative, it is undeniable that, hard though he may be trying, it is not currently working.

  • Pat

    Arseblog is actually quite variable and sometimes quite annoying with a know all attitude to Arsene Wenger.

  • Linda Mcneilly

    I’m not going to dress this up because every Gooner saw yesterday that we had a very bad day at the office. What really worries me more than anything is the lack of desire I saw Sunday. I can take us being beaten (hurts like hell) but what I cannot swallow was the lack of commitment and desire we showed, we did not look like a team that wanted to win the PL so badly that we put everything into it. If we are to win this league then that commitment and desire must be there because if we don’t pass the ball around quicker and get our range and passing right I fear for the Boss and the team. This Leauge is not over and more than anything else in this world I want to see my team and manager lift this cup and say welcome back.

  • Menace

    Col – I had posted a response but it seems to have evaporated into the ether. The Brand is a ‘living’ entity & has been improving despite all the negative views of those anti Arsenal. The infrastructure seems to have been ignored by many but the Brand has grown because of it. The additional wins in the FA cup have improved it further.

    The team has always been in ‘the mix’ to retain CL football for a record number of consecutive years. So not only was Arsenal there when winning the league but also when earning the huge amount of money to repay loans.

    The repetition of success is not as easy as most clubs have progressed & learned Wenger style football while maintaining the bully boy tackles for Arsenal matches. There is no easy game in the EPL as most clubs have learned. I believe that Arsenal will win the EPL despite the hounding of Wenger. However, if the policing is favourable the traffic flows easier to the guided destination.

    Wenger was instrumental in exposing corruption in France & has been hounded ever since. Those corrupt forces have not disappeared. They are always in the background encouraging the media to pick on anything including the zipping of a coat.

    Do you for one instant believe that FIFA is now ‘clean’? I cannot see any change apart from names. The structure, the system & even the people are no different. Football is still corrupt.