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May 2021

Stoke – Arsenal : 1-0 the PGMO back to normal already

By Walter Broeckx

Arsenal starting line up: Cech, Mustafi, Monreal, Kolasinac, Bellerin, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey, Xhaka, Özil, Welbeck, Lacazette

On the beach: Ospina, Mertesacker, Coquelin, Elneny, Iwobi, Walcott, Giroud

A first chance for Stoke when they break but Cech rushes off his line to smother the effort.  Meanwhile it is clear that Bellerin plays on the left wing back position and The Ox on the right. Stoke had a good opening 5 minutes but Arsenal gradually taking over and an effort from Bellerin is blocked by a defender. After an Arsenal corner Pieters handles the ball but the ref judges it not a foul. The assistant at the other end only wants to give the ball to Stoke it seems.  First ignoring a ball that was clearly out and then giving a throw in to Stoke. A good combination on the left for Arsenal but the cross from Bellerin is cleared by a Stoke defender. 0-0 after 15 minutes.

Lacazette finds Ramsey but his shot is blocked by the keeper. Xhaka with a ball to Welbeck but the Stoke keeper is first on the ball. Then Bellerin goes down and there was clearly a trip from the defender but no penalty given.  The Ox finds Welbeck but his shot was straight at the keeper. After two corners from Arsenal Stoke can counter but the shot is too weak to trouble Cech. The Ox with a free kick that finds Ramsey at the far post but a brilliant stop from Butland only brings a corner. Stoke win a few free kicks and a long throw but only a header from Shawcross that went well over to show for it. Still 0-0 after 30 minutes.

Özil with a long dribble then giving it to Bellerin in some space but his shot was well over. A shot from distance from Xhaka but too easy for the keeper. The Ox with a long run but in the end he delivers something that is not a shot nor a cross. Xhaka losing the ball twice in a row but Stoke can” take advantage. Monreal with an excellent tackle on Diouf stopping  a possible Stoke counter. Fletcher hacking Özil from behind but no card from the ref. Xhaka having a difficult 10 minutes with again taking the wrong option after winning the ball high up the field first. A cross from The Ox is headed over by Shawcross but from the resulting corner Butland is first on the ball before Ramsey can become dangerous. 0-0 after 45 minutes.

Xhaka losing the ball again and by chasing the ball too high he leaves the defence unguarded and Jese is send away and puts the ball past Cech. 1-0 after 46 minutes.  Arsenal cross and Monreal heads the ball back and Zouma again handles the ball in the Stoke penalty area. But again the ref gives nothing.  A cross from The Ox follows but Butland can just grab the ball from the head of Welbeck. Özil with a great ball to Bellerin whose shot is spilled by Butland but Stoke can scramble it clear for a corner in the end. Özil with a cross to Welbeck but his shoulder/header goes over. Mustafi with a run on the overlap on the right and his low cross finds Ramsey but his effort goes straight at the keeper.  Arsenal still 1-0 behind after one hour.

Stoke counter after some long Arsenal pressure and Cech has to tip over the effort from Berahino. Choupa-Moting hits the side net after the corner is half cleared. Arsenal having 83% of the ball in the second half so far. After 65 minutes Giroud comes on and Kolasinac comes off. Gitouf with a great touch to Welbeck who was one on one with the keeper but Butland comes out as the winner. Ramsey with a great control but he is out crowed by Stoke defenders before he can shoot.  A cross from The Ox finds Lacazette but it is cleared and then Özil has two shots but one is blocked and the other goes wide. An Arsenal attack in the middle ends up in front of the feet of Lacazette who scores but the assistant raises his flag. Lacazette was level so a wrong decision from the ref. Can we make up for this injustice? Still 1-0 behind after 75 minutes.

Arsenal pressing and pressing. Walcott and Iwobi come one for Lacazette and Xhaka after 78 minutes. The ref now giving every tumble of a Stoke player as a foul. Marinner ignoring a foul on The Ox and then Mustafi with a hard tackle on Pieters but Mustafi had the ball and it was outside the penalty area anyway. But Pieters stays down for a long while of course milking the situation.  Monreal with a cross from the left but Giroud heads wide.

From our match perspective I can say we had no overlap on the left flank. Bellerin as being right footed always had to come back or delivered a poor cross.  I think we should have played Per and get Monreal or Kolasinac do their job on the left flank so we would have a natural cross line on the ball. I would have made another team selection from the start but well it’s easy from over here of course.

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One real chance for Stoke and they took it, we didn’t play at our best level, had more than enough chances and when we scored the refs disallowed it. Arsenal had two handball penalties turned down, another one for a trip on Bellerin, a good goal disallowed.  I wonder if the media will cry foul about it as they did with the touch of the hand of Özil 90 seconds before we scored a goal las week.  But my bet is they will not even mention it.





37 comments to Stoke – Arsenal : 1-0 the PGMO back to normal already

  • Swapneel

    @For All those who think we were not good enough.
    Yes have we lack something, who doesn’t at times
    Spurs lacked something in their first match, just see how referee ensured they didn’t lose.

    Tell me if referee was fair would Stoke have won today?

    Would stoke have continued playing so rough if referee had booked them at appropriate times?
    There was one foul against Walcott still referee gives it in favor of stoke

    This was a match we should have won and would have won if referring was fair enough

    And finally I won’t hold any grudge against Alexis, Ox or Ozil if they have decided to leave. How can then continue playing when they know they are being clearly cheated on the field

  • markyb

    Marriner was looking straight at the trip on Bellerin. Banana shaped he is, as yoda would say.

  • Al

    The cheating is beyond ridiculous now. Marriner used the template he used for our match in the Emirates cup again today; every coming together going Stoke’s way. But it’s diabolical of him to ignore that trip on Bellerin.

    The media here is poisonous; they gloss over glaring anomalies and yet magnify very minor things, to suit their agenda/narrative. I can see some (will start calling them trumpites – a combination of trump supporters, who refuse to see basic & obvious stuff right in front of their eyes, and termites, who only come out of the woodwork when something happens) already bringing the knives out for our players. But think i counted 5 very good point-blank saves by the stoke keeper, and if you throw into the mix those 2 awful decisions from the officials we should have left stoke with 3 points today. But we left with nothing.

  • Arthur

    Great summary Walter. Thank you!

    Strangely I was not upset at the result. I accept that we are not going to achieve much this year. So I was able to enjoy our combinations and the skills of our players. Maybe I have stumbled on the secret of enjoying watching Arsenal?

    I never expect the referees or the media to be fair and so that does not upset me in the slightest.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    I called as three penalties as well, Pauline kept telling me off for shouting at the TV!

    Please Arsène can we have three proper Centre Backs for the next game, Bellerin on the right and Kolasinac or Monreal at left wing back. That might just give our defence a chance.

    We will never win the league with this wunch of bankers acting as match officials

  • tobi

    I’m glad I found Untold, its the only real arsenal blog out there.

  • Not afraid gunner

    Until, you guys have the guts to call out the manager, you will continue going round in circles.

    Why didn’t we have a proper defense line? Why play Bellerin on the left? Why did we buy Kolasnic? Is Montreal a proper defender?

    We need to buy at least 3 players, best is four, and they don’t need to be world class. Van Dijk can do a job for us in CB, we need better midfielder than Xhaka. He is too limited. Ramsey often runs forward, forgetting his partnership with Xhaka. Overhaul the mid and get s WC defender.

    Why play Ozil? What does he contribute?

  • Jimbo

    I love the way the cheating tards called officials cannot see any of the five penalty claims yet can notice that Lacazette’s shoelace was offside.No doubt THE aaa and media will just focus on our defending and how plucky Stoke were..

  • Josif


    You can’t change the English media.

    Here is an interesting stat: Arsenal have lost just twice since the new formation was introduced and Rob Holding sat out both of those games.

  • John L

    Regardless of our team’s errors and shortcomings, a fair set of match officials would have awarded 1, 2 or even 3 penalties to us and would not have disallowed Lacazette’s goal for a fake off-side.

    That would have added up to a comfortable victory.

  • Dom

    I had been looking forward to this game after our ‘hesitant’ start against the Foxes…which i had put down to nerves and unusual defence line-up.
    What i saw this afternoon has totally floored me !
    I will not be mega negative but i will say that our game plan was very confusing for my small brain. Running the ball quickly down the wings then passing it backwards and sideways, backwards again so that the opposition had time to regroup before we tried to make a ‘killer’ pass…brilliant ! The clock was running and we continued to waste time.
    My feeling was that certain players were having a day off, which can happen, unfortunately there were too many…
    Could have done better : Ozil, Xhaka, Bellerin, Mustafi, Monreal. As for Welbeck…always in the right place at the right time,shame he has recurring difficulty in finishing.Shame Arsene didn’t start Giroud,but there you are.
    The fact that we had a goal disallowed, at least one penalty that we should have been awarded not given is not lost on me BUT the amount of possession we had, we really have no excuse for this loss.
    I can’t see us play so poorly at Liverpool, i’m sure we’ll turn it round then.

  • para

    Despite the mistakes of the ref, we did not play well at all, but we have to stop relying on refs to have a good game.

    First, we did not close down Stoke, we let them play into our half.
    The intensity of last weeks game did not carry over to this week, and we had a whole week to rest.

    For me, there is something wrong about our training and it’s games like this that show that up.
    Look how stoke played, they closed us down at every chance, made us change direction.

    We cannot rely on scoring more than our opponents, as it does not work always.

    I thought last week was a sign of things to come that we played with a second defence and still won, but today the frailties of our team, even with all the new signings still shone through.

    Anyone saying ther was anything “positive” about this game can take a jump.

    Oh yes, “positive” is that we only lost by 1 goal, but its still 3 points lost so what good is that?

    So, my rant over. :mrgreen:

  • GoingGoingGooner

    We shall get better. The PGMO…I’m not betting on it.

  • WalterBroeckx

    If the assistant raised his flag for that offside he was either superman (which he clearly was not) or just was wanting Arsenal not to score. There is no way the human eye can see the without any help. And the fact is that if there is doubt you should give the advantage to the attacker.
    If there is no daylight between the two players (there was none apart from 2 cm of footware) the players are to be considered level.
    So it was a decision that cost us 1 point at least.

  • Vanya Dickens

    Early days but nevertheless feeling rather glum after the first defeat of the season. Ozil, Cech and Xhaka will get annihilated by the wa**kersey on Arseole Fanta T Wee. As will Arsene. Ho hum. On with Liverpool battle.

  • Menace

    The Pieters handball was not seen by the PGMOL official but it was accidental as the hand was supposed to be in his pocket looking for the note offering a reward for blind officiating.

    Subsequent handballs were in exactly the same vein – accidentally moving to positions where the ball would make contact & bounce off favourably.

    The first Bellerin penalty was not seen by the official because the foot tripping Bellerin was obstructing the grass on the edge of the pitch. The second penalty was not seen as the official was looking for his watch.

    The goal scored by Lacazette was offside because he was not supposed to be on the pitch. Wenger was totally wrong in claiming that it was a goal & Lacazette was not offside as Wenger was not officiating the match.

    We are in our second match in the League of Cheats with the select group of PGMOL officiating & the corrupt FA allowing rampant corruption including blatant prejudice & racism & the selective blindness of all who are involved in broadcast.

  • Ajay

    I agree with Not Afraid Gooner. What the heck kind of team selection was that. LB in CB, LWB at LB, RB at LWB considering we had three CB. One on the bench and two of them not named in the squad. Second time in as many matches that Xhaka’s wayward passing cost the team a goal. When Welbeck proved today he can not finish clinically why was he not substituted instead of Lacazette in the second half? Why was Giroud not started against a physically stronger team? How come Lacazette is not the focal point of attacks?

  • Alex

    It is the replica of the season .Same all same with Le prof.

    Blame ref
    Blame players

    Le prof the always correct for 13 years.

    I am pretty much convinced under le prof nothing changes.Sad

  • GoingGoingGooner

    3 points:

    1. We did not play particularly well. We shall improve. There is the possibility of another player purchase.

    2. The ref missed some important calls. Not much to say here – that won’t change and we can’t expect the refs to make the calls that help us win.

    3. Stoke did what they needed to do to win. In my opinion, it is important to give the opposition credit. As much as I don’t like the Stoke fans and a couple of their players, it is horribly arrogant of us to expect to beat any team in the Premier League. We have to play hard and play well to beat teams at this level.

    Tomorrow is another day and I am looking forward to an improved performance next weekend.

  • Menace

    The critical part of the offside call is the fact that Shawcross makes the final ‘pass’ to Lacazette. You cannot be offside when the ball is played to you by an opponent.

    Where the feck was Poll looking when he commented for BT Sports? He cannot count to two & yet he is their equivalent of God.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Poll was a prat when in the middle – sadly he hasn’t got better with age

  • omgarsenal

    You’re the only sad thing here Alex so learn some grammar,syntax and spelling and maybe we can actually decipher your innane ramblings,unsupported by any evidence and simply typical aaa BS….LeGrove awaits!

  • para

    Come on omgarsenal, you are reaching here.
    Evidence? Grammar? Syntax?

    I’m sure you are just as demoralised as Alex, so why not put the blame where it really belongs.

    On the preparation for the game, the team selection, the changes made(70min as per usual), on the team for not finishing, on the team for not finding their striker more, on the officials, on the coach.

  • Luscious lisa

    Could and should have won but didn’t. It will happen to all the top teams at least once a season. Ref didn’t help, but when you are clean through on goal as often as Arsenal were, you have to hit the net and not the keeper. Still, 70%+ plus possession away from home is a big positive.

  • Polo

    One lost and its all doom and gloom, no wonder people think Arsenal fans are jokers. I wonder if these moaners actually watched the match or just read on the blogs or news feed.

    Stoke didn’t do much but defend, something they are good at, but credit to them as that goal was top class, they must have learnt that play watching a lot of Arsenal videos 🙂

    Critical decisions didn’t go our way and it cost us the match, nothing to do with the team performance. The team attacked and created many chances, it’s just unfortunate decisions didn’t go our way and the Stoke keeper played well. I bet if you asked any Stoke fans whether they were lucky to win that match, the majority will say yes. Credit to Stoke fans they made the place intimidating and it probably got to the referees.

    If AW started Giroud, and we had the same result, I could see the moaners say why start Giroud, he should have been a super sub blah blah blah.

    The only negative I could say is that Welbeck, Ozil, and Bellerin need to train more on scoring goals, especially Welbeck, if he can somehow be more clinical, he can be the best striker in the Premier League, the guy is always there with an opportunity to score.

  • Al

    Some of you here always try to appear wiser with the benefit of hindsight.. Bellerin playing on the left was confusing? Wasn’t the same player through on goal with only an illegal tackle stopping him from scoring or at least put the ball on a platter for our striker? Would you be saying the same has he scored? He had many forays into the Stoke penalty area before he moved to left back.

    You are funny; you say only positive is we didn’t lose by more than a single goal.. what match did you watch? which other chances did Stoke create that you can point to as lucky we didn’t concede from? Only one team was lucky in that match, and it wasn’t us. Stop the negativity and incessant whining and apportion the blame squarely where it ought to be on; marriner and his fellow linesman. Was also comical you trying to argue the tackle on bellerin wasn’t noticeable in real time, yet even the BT sport pundits (who rarely see things from an Arsenal POV) admitted shouting “penalty!” the minute Bellerin was tackled. Everyone in the studio agreed it should have been a penalty. No excuse as marriner was only 5 yards away with a clear line of vision.

    I thought the way we were set up we were causing Stoke so many problems as we had lots of pace on the wings; butland made no less than 5 one on one saves in that match. With a fair set of officials there is no way we were leaving Stoke without a point at least.

  • Pat

    We definitely had the better of the first half. Again we got punished for losing the ball in midfield just after half time. But with the chances lost to biased refereeing we would still have drawn or won. Very disappointing to see the refs haven’t changed.

  • John L

    BBC reporters are conflicted today:

    They can’t decide whether to give more prominence to

    a) Arsenal’s defeat (only to be expected away at Stoke / Wenger moaning at admittedly “harsh” off-side call when Lacazette was “only narrowly” offside, also no mention of penalty claims etc etc: )

    b) Man Utd’s wonderful glorious victory which proves that they are guaranteed to win the Premier League this season. (ignoring total opponents’ cave-in for second game in succession, whilst eulogising Pogba, Mata, Rashfors and Co. for being so absolutely brilliant.

    Their reporting on football is as toxic as their reporting on politics.

  • Al

    Thanks for the link to that tweet, Finsbury. Which begs the question, why are some of our fans not outraged by such blatant & obvious robbery?? ?

  • omgarsenal

    Para…..what; evidence,proper syntax and grammar are not important, and not needed on UA? We lost a game we should and could have won but so what? I am not demoralized like you are Alex, I take it one game at a time and saw many positives which I expect to see more of at Liverpool.
    What blame and why blame anyone? What good will it do, what influence will it have on anything Arsenal, other than to perpetuate the myth that people like you and Alex know more about football than the professionals do?
    I refuse to blame anyone, but positive and constructive criticism I endorse wholeheartedly! I see our glass three-quarters full and know that getting upset at things I cannot change is a recipe for unhappiness,frustration and negativism, all of which I reject as a losing mentality….maybe you and Alex should as well?

  • Pat

    The tweet shows clearly Danny Welbeck should have got a penalty. I thought so at the time so I don’t see how the referee didn’t see it.

  • Al

    In theory we could have had 5 penalties in that match (3 for shoves on Ramsey, Bellerin & Welbeck, and 2 for handballs) but of course we know the odds of that happening are one in a billion, even for referee-preffered teams. But to not get at least one, then have a goal disallowed, surely demonstrates there was something wrong with the officiating? Yet some will still bash the players… shocking.

  • Al

    The refereeing standard in this match was at par with our FA cup final v Wigan where I think we were denied 5 penalties too.

  • Al

    Or was it against Hull?

  • Jammy J

    omgarsenal – Because when you have to resort to calling out somebodies grammar, you just come across as extremely petty and sanctimonious. Perhaps, some people can’t write as well as you, so what? Why does it make such a difference to you, where you feel the need to belittle someone, over something so arbitrary (in this context)? As long as you can still read it correctly, then it shouldn’t be a problem.