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This is what we came here for: a wonderful night at Arsenal

By Tony Attwood

Europa nights tend to be fairly relaxed at Arsenal stadium – at least at this stage of the competition.  We expect to win, and we expect to see goals, and quite often we get what we expect.  Not always of course, but sometimes, and the good games are the games to remember.

This was a special occasion, not because it was a jolly 4-0 win, but because we saw further evidence of what we had gathered before: that Martinelli really is the real deal – that something special player who knows what it is all about and delivers it.

There was a feeling last night of being there and watching the explosion of a super talent; a game we will think back to in years to come when we debate great moments in the history of being of a supporter.  Yes I was there, I saw him when he first arrived.

Of course much depends on what happens hereafter, but looking at the enormity of this young man’s confidence and ability, the portents are very positive indeed.

Martinelli is 18.  Virtually no one knew who he was when, thanks to Edu, we plucked him from Ituano and made him a squad player.  Last night we saw Standard Liège simply not know what on earth to do about him.

Meanwhile the away support filled all the available spaces in their part of the ground.  They brought their cheer leaders who never once look at the game but lead the chanting and singing, and their drummers who kept up the beat all the way through – even when 4-0 down.  Their team might not be up to our standard but their support is extraordinary.

12 comments to This is what we came here for: a wonderful night at Arsenal

  • Mark Mywords

    He was fantastic, and only 18!
    Tierney great as well.
    All in all, much better than some of the stodgy stuff we’ve had to endure from the lot who sometimes turn up at the weekend. I suspect this season will be mainly about integrated these kids into the regular side.
    Can’t wait.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Lots to be happy about.
    Bellerin still rusty and a bit careful after his long injury spell. But that is normal and the longer the match went on the more relaxed he became.
    Tierney … wow… strong, quick, skilful an excellent cross…. What a player he seems to be
    Gabigoal also known as Martinelli… excellent instinctive finishing, great work rate, and impressing in the middle and on the flank
    Another clean sheet…
    And a good attacking display.
    We could and probably should have scored a few more.
    The media in Belgium say that Arsenal could have destroyed Standard Liège completely and that Standard can count themselves lucky for escaping the massacre by the hands of a very young and very talented team.

  • Mark Mywords

    Interested to hear the Belgian take on the game.
    It seems to confirm we were as good as we thought we were.
    “Ah, but it was only Liege.”
    Yes, but it was only Watford and Man Utd, who are hardly world beaters and we still managed to underachieve with our more “experienced” side,
    It must tell Emery something about which direction we should be going.

  • Nitram

    Tony

    “The Guardian, to be fair, did give a good write up, but then used it to talk about Özil who wasn’t in the squad.”

    Exactly what the Sun did after the Forest match. Turning the report in to a personal assassination of Ozil.

    They just cant help themselves

  • WalterBroeckx

    Oh and as Tony showed this is a team who sits in 2nd in the league in Belgium and is seen as a possible title candidate. The top team for the moment with 1 point ahead is Club Bruges who just went to Real Madrid and got away with a 2-2 draw after being 0-2 up at half time.

  • Davsta

    The game was a total pleasure to view on BT Sport last night, nice to have John Hartson on game co commentary duties. The narrative throughout fairly represented the game and Big John seemed very pleased with the football played without getting carried away. It made a delightful change from the usual shat.
    The ref had a decent game and let the teams play, only towards the end when Standard had had a gut full of the football lessons did it get a little bit niggly, but nothing nasty and no one injured.

  • Nitram

    Davsta

    John Hartson does tend to be one of the better pundits but he can still bit of a, well you know.

    I remember a particular instance when I was driving to work listening to him on the radio. We was being kicked of the park and the ref was doing nothing.

    All Hartson said was ‘they’re being very clever here, they’re sharing it (the kicking) around”.

    He and the commentator actually admired what was going on and actually laughed about it. It was a while ago now but I’m sure it was against Villa but I cant swear.

    I did write about it on Untold actually.

    But yes he was very positive without getting too carried away as befitted the opposition.

    Also the ref was pretty good but he still missed a very good penalty shout.

    I also thought Standard handled themselves pretty well considering how it must of hurt being given such a run-around.

    Personally I don’t think they did give up either, and tried when they could to break on us, hence inducing a good performance out of Martinez.

  • WalterBroeckx

    In Belgium the media think that the foul on Nelson warranted a penalty. But 4-0 or 5-0 will not really matter too much in the end I think

  • Gord

    In the “news”, was a story out of Birmingham (Wolves territory?) about the odds for the 3 English teams to win the Europa.

    Before yesterday’s games, ManU and Arsenal were both 5/1 (best odds. Sevilla was something. Wolves were something. After yesterday’s games, the odds for both ManU and Arsenal are unchanged at 5/1. (Sevilla is 9/1 and Wolves is 16/1). How can ManU play the game they did, and Arsenal play the game they did; and the odds remain the same?

  • Menace

    Gord – the odds depend on the amount of money gambled on each team. ManU obviously have a lot of of optimistic wealth being bet on them. In fact the bookmakers themselves have a lot of favour for ManU.

  • OYEBAMIJI ADETOMIWA

    Walter Broeckx

    You are spot on, but what I actually notice is
    that the boys play pattern is currently beyond Unai Emery’s Invention, because what I’m seeing on display is Wenger-ball (Possessional and Positional Attacking Football) that is being taught the boys in the academy for long periods of time back.
    You have to watch
    Frankfurt vs Arsenal,
    Arsenal vs Forest, and Arsenal vs Standard Liege again, and you will see that the Scintillating Football on display is very very different from Emery-ball being played in The League by The Emery First Team.
    Wenger-ball of the Arsenal-B Team has Played 3 Won 3 with 9 Points, 13 Goals, and has conceded 0 Goal compared to League performances and results that we know.
    Remember that Tierney, Guendouzi,Cebalos,Toreira,Pepe,Martinelli,and Aubameyang are the only Players that doesn’t know much about Wenger-ball, still yet integrate very well with the rest.
    You will recall that Martinez,Belerin, Holding,A.M.N,Willock,Nelson,Saka, are all Arsenal Academy Scholars and Trainee, trained in the Philosophy of Wenger-ball. The likes of Mustafi,Ozil Play for Wenger and knows about Wenger-ball.

    Don’t forget that both B.F.G who is The Head of The Academy and F.Lunberg who is currently The Assistant Manager are both Wenger Boys who played for him, did their Coaching Badges under him, and bought to his Philosophy of How The Beautiful Game should be played.
    Even looking back, you’ll see that it is Wenger-ball that failed in England (not because the Play Pattern or the Philosophy is bad,but because Arsene Wenger and his teams of the time is being hated and Targeted by both The Media and P.G.M.O) The Media because Wenger refused to buy to their Spend, Spend and Spend style they Prefer to youth training and development on One hand, and Shrewd business like system of spotting Talented young players and Bargain scouting on the other, The P.G.M.O because Wenger is the first non British Manager to claim Premier League and even later dominated the Game, He predicted The Invicibles is imminent and it come to pass.
    It is on records that Wenger-ball is so Beautiful The Legendary Pep Gardiola beg to be part of it’s History, but no space for him, But he later choose Highbury for his Badges (after his Coaching training) Under the Tutelage of Le Professour. It is Wenger-ball PEP took to La Masia Academy and renamed Tiki-taka to complete what Barcelona FC have been trying to do before, (That is copying the system of Wenger) don’t forget They previously bought Marc Overmars,Sylvinho and others from Arsenal at various period, That is How beautiful Wenger-ball are, When Guardiola started building Barcelona’s first team latter, He implemented Wenger-ball Philosophy otherwise called Tiki-taka to the fullest, First by replacing the Star studed Barcelona’s players gradually with Players from The Academy that he had already taught how he thought Football should be played.
    He sent away Ronaldinho to be replaced permanently by Lionel messi, replaced Etoo fil with Pedro, replaced Yaya Toure with Sergio Busquet.
    Right from Goal Post to through Midfield to Attack, F.C Barca’s key positions are being manned by Graduates of La Masia (F.C Barcelona’s Academy), From Their Goalkeeper (I forgot his name) to Carles Puyol, Gerrard Pique, Sergio Busquet,Xavi Iniesta, Pedro, Messi and others i couldn’t remember were all Academy Graduates.and they are the players who contributed most to more than Thirteen or Fourteen Trophies PEP won over Three Seasons he spent there, He prefer and believe in promoting from the Academy players who had already know how he wanted them to play and inject them seamlessly, than shelling out big monies for big players with the attendant Ego that will feel too big to take his Instructions, and He achieve unparalleled success with it. f.c.barca spent on big players then though, but not because PEP needed them,but because at the back of some Success achieve by their immediate winning team of Frank Rijkard, They wanted to show they can flex muscles with Real Madrid F.C (The Galcticos) in spending power, so they bought Thierry Henry David Villa,Zlatan Ibrahimovic and others I can’t remember, but they contributed little to the winning teams of the time,The Spine of the teams are Players Nutured in a certain way of play from the Academy,after Three Seasons when Guardiola sees that core of the teams is becoming tired (because over the same period,Core of F.C Barca’s Spanish players are the spine of the Spanish National team that won back to back Euro Championship and World Cup in between) Spanish Manager has to buy in to the ongoing success of Barcelona fc then to make Spain successful too by adoption of Barca Players And their so called Tiki-taka, From Defence to midfield to Attack, Puyol, Pique, Busquet,Xavi, Iniesta, Pedro, Villa and even Using Fabregas as a false striker in place of Messi who used to play the role for Barcelona,but because Messi is not Spanish, And Spain wanted to play the System in full,They have to adopt another La Masia Academy Graduate But this time an Arsenal FC player,Cesc Fabregas for the role. If you remember, Fabregas learnt Wenger-ball in Highbury where PEP learnt it too before renaming it Tiki-taka. Wenger started experiments of false Striker with Denis Bergkamp thru Nwakwo Kanu,Van Persie, Emmanuel Adebayor, Eduardo da Silva and so on, Fabregas can did it successfully for Spain because it has been taught him by Le Prof.after all the Trophy laden Years for Club and Country, PEP see that His team is becoming weak, he refreshed them with another round of talents from La Masia, Namely Christian Tello, Munir El Hadady,Bojan, Thiago Alcantara Sergi Roberto and some guys in Defence, all from La Masia, If you look at all These early adventures of PEP, you will see Arsene Wenger written all over it, Passing Pressing, Possessional, positional attacking technical football,Passing out from Goal Post, Using false Striker, Promoting Players already trained in these Arts, from the Academy, developing and giving Them chances to become Stars in the first team,are, All are Hallmark of Wenger-ball. Only that This Philosophy that worked very well for PEP in Spain didn’t work so well in England not because The Philosophy is bad but because Physical Football is loved more in England than technical football and particularly because the Orchestrator and even His Players were hated with Passion until it becomes obsession, The League systematically finished career of Their Finest Midfielder of the time, Jack Wilshere with bad Officiating. forgetting He is a British International because he is an Arsenal FC player, The refs will leave those rugby players called footballers to kick Arsenal Players to pieces without caution, And when Arsenal try that, they will be given loads of cards, Their Media accomplice will be saying Arsenal are a dirty team,or be saying you don’t win anything with Kids, It is not a coincidence that Pep Guardiola choose Mikel Arteta another Graduate of Wenger-ball as His Assistant for his Manchester City Adventures, Because apart from being a compatriot, and fellow La Masia Graduate, Arteta Played in England and even played for Arsene Wenger at Arsenal FC and later did His Coaching Badge under Tutelage of Arsene Wenger just like Guardiola himself, He choosed Aterta in order for him to know and used latest Updated Version of Wenger-ball from him for his Next Football Adventure at Manchester City.

  • Yilch

    Wow, very hilarious post Oye. This long, repetitive, verbose writing style, is it the Yoruba way or is it a Nigerian thing? SAA would be proud of this comment. “The legendary pep begged to be a part of Wenger-ball, but no space for him” I can’t stop laughing

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