Great, just great. I suppose when I thought of calling this blog Positively Arsenal I should have considered how difficult that would make days like today. All summer I’ve been looking forward to carrying on where we left off , and within 45 minutes of the start of the new season the rug has been pulled from under my feet.
I know very well its just one game. I know we have great players .I know we have a great manager. I know all the positives but that was a bag of crap.
I could say we played better than United and Liverpool , but here is the problem, we didn’t play better than West Ham, and we were playing West Ham. Playing them at home on a perfect pitch on a beautiful day. We couldn’t even score a goal .
The buzz phrase this summer is “no excuses” and normally I would suggest people that say this are stupid and don’t understand the concept of random events, but as a one off game, I have to accept this is true.
All summer we have been banging on about team spirit and cohesion. Its hard to think that is the case, it looked like 11 strangers had met up and decided to have a kick about.
I mean I’m struggling here, I cant understand how so many players have a stinker all at once. Confidence should have been sky high. What went wrong?
The reality is until the first goal went in we were the better team. not by much, but we looked the most likely to score. Then that? What was that?
Arsene said “It was a collective one. I think there are many things to say about that. I knew that if the delivery was good, we would be in trouble before the free-kick was taken The concentration and the organisation was not perfect. Positionally we were too far from our goal and gave them too much distance to run into. We killed ourselves.” .
Well honestly, that’s not good enough.We had a back four and none of then are under 30 years old.How can that happen ? I don’t get it. Someone set the line there ! Who ? Cech? Per? Whoever it was they need to have a serious word with themselves.
And now to Cech ! Had Almunia done that he would have got savaged,and rightly so. And if that wasn’t enough he got his positioning all wrong for the second.However he was less culpable than AOC who gifted the ball in a dangerous area,
This isn’t getting any easier as I write.
Coquelin decided to do his worst Pirlo impression and sprayed the ball out of play time and again, almost like he was playing for line-outs. Perhaps that was because Aaron was usually nowhere near him as he seemed to want to be the No.10.
Its easy to be a smart arse with hindsight but Coquelin/Santi works, why change it?
Our passing was poor and some of the first touches were nothing short of dire.
If Arsene was worried about us being behind the curve physically then surely he should have stuck to the system that served us so well after Christmas last year and told them to keep it simple.I love Ramsey, but he need to get a grip sometimes and stop thinking he is Bergkamp on speed.
Right, its not a disaster, humiliation or a disgrace. Its a below par performance that resulted to 3 points being lost. All that is good about the club and team are still good. No point pretending its not a huge disappointment though or absolving the manager and players of any responsibility.
Sadly now the mood is down and already the team is under scrutiny and pressure. Any way we cut it up its a bad day.
With Swansea at home, we miss a lot of chances, enough to say ‘9 out of 10 times we win that’
Grim part of today is just i think we the lack of clear cut chances we seemed doomed to lose that. Whatever it is, It must be rectified.
MAybe there was a reason why ramsey was right, we seemed to lack balance.
At least we are only 3 points off top…but also bottom of the table for what seems to be the first timei’ve seen!
I don’t think there is a top team more reliant than Arsenal on scoring the first goal, even against the lesser teams.
I can’t remember a game where all of our team played so poorly, not one player put in a top performance today. Ox was doing well to a point, great at going past opponents but his passes/crosses are too deep/shallow, too far in front/behind intended target, then to cap it all off he once again needlessly loses the ball in a dangerous position leading to a goal against us. Cazorla and Ozil passed the buck today, neither wanted to know, No one wanted to get into the WHU area, not even Ramsey whose normal game is to get in there, Giroud went out wide too often too. The cross put in by Giroud that the goalie spilled with Ozil reacting too, showed everything that was wrong with out game in an attacking sense today, Ozil was the only Arsenal player in their box, no one else came close to getting in, and we were chasing the game at that point, too many today wanted to pass the buck, took the easy option.
The lack of organisation at the freekick that WHU took the lead from was disgraceful, and as Wenger pointed out, the youngest player in our back five is 29, so experience was not lacking, just a bit of gumption. Ten yards too far from our goal, then no one even challenged the scorer compounded by Cech coming flying out of his goal and getting no where near the ball.
On the second goal Ox lost it far too easily, but then 3 Arsenal players make no effort to get to the scorer, Per and Kos basically stood still and let the guy shoot. Lazy defending.
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I’m not sure what to make of our fans, it seem that Ty guy got hit today for supporting our manager, and I see some real idiots putting up a fake picture suggesting that Szczesny celebrating Cech letting in the two goals (the picture was from ages ago and it was WS celebrating Arsenal being 2-0 up in a game)
Also must say that Clause guy really needs to seek professional help, before he ends up sectioned.
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George, I was equally pissed off shortly after the final whistle, but I’ve had a few hours to digest it all. It probably wasn’t as bad as all that. As Arsene pointed out in his post match comments, west ham are further advanced physically having played competitive games in the ropey league. It was a ‘bad day at the office’, which anyone can have and there are still 37 games to get our shit together. I was also thinking that we should revert back to the formation that served us so well second half of last season. I also wondered whether the early unpunished ‘leveller’ on Mesut’s achilles may have inhibited him for the rest of the game?
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I don’t think it’s peculiar to the arsenal Eddy, most teams try and sit back a bit after going a goal up and playing more on the counter, same as it ever was I guess. The two nil sequence the season before, two-one last season, all the teams at the top including the arsenal in spite of all the disinformation out there could and can grind out the results when not at their best. The tables from recent seasons show this.
coming back against teams in such circumstances, when they get the first, it helps when the pitch isn’t tilted like away at Stoke last year, that’s been the most obvious difference to many observers.
Today the lack of concentration on the west ham goal came thirty seconds after Adrian pulled off a decent save to deny arsenal taking the lead after a decent first half for the gunners that will be forgotten by all the groaning ninnies and S&M merchants. Same as it ever was. Adrian had a blinder last season too, no errors that day for arsenal at the back and if I remember correctly a close late victory in the end. A contrasting day today for the two keepers.
The league is that tight and has been for years now in my humble and insignificant opinion. No one will be more pissed off then the players were at the final whistle, and no one will be able to make up for the result save for the players when they face another difficult game away to Palace.
Debuchy still a way behind the others in terms of sharpness after a long spell out? Bellerin can’t start every game at nineteen, there will be rotation at RB.
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some reports that Wenger went mad at the team after the game, said to have kept them 45 minutes in the dressing room. Now these reports might be coming from the fact that Wenger kept the journos waiting 45 minutes longer than normal before turning up for the after game presser. Could be any number of reasons for this.
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Come, come, have you failed to realise that ALL the 20 teams in the EPL want a top 4 finish.
West Ham, rested the top players to target the Arsenal.
The Arsenal ? Wait and see! I believe.
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They will have been embarrassed by this performance and will fight like hell to make things right. The media will try to read more than there is into this loss puts them out of the title race, but all this craziness goes away with a win.
The same thing for Cech. If he wants to put this game behind him, he can do it by playing a blinder next week-end.
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consolation is we had better lose early and remove unbeaten pressure from the onset… Ok… glad i didn’t watch so only have to react to the result… we have 37 games to bounce back…yes we can even still win the league being 3 points off the top with 37 games to go..
I remember reading the phrase in the write up this morning and saying… hmnn what if that actually happens and we lose the first game meaning we have 37 to make up the loss?
Oh, shit. Had a weird disconcerting moment there when I had to check what name was on the top of the page.
For me, it was an agonising day, but in the aftermath, as always, I try wrestle my way back to some real, objective view of the game as opposed to my massively emotional experience watching it.
Some say suffering badly if the team loses is the mark of a true fan. I say, drawing heavily from personal experience, it’s more likely to be the sign of an individual who is currently relying a little too much on football for their pleasure. Today was more painful for me than the total pain of my first four or five years supporting as a kid (sometime around 91). Either I was a ridiculously well-adjusted happy kid or somethings not ideal in the old life at this point
All of which is my long, embarrassingly candid but necessary introduction to saying ‘George, you’re killing me here!’
Your uncharacteristic gloom comes too close to the gloom (ok,agony) I felt watching and which I’ve spent the last few hours trying to convince myself is unjustified and has more to do with my own shit than the team’s shit.
Finally,though, I’m a little bit glad to witness the wobble. I had more than a few gigantic ones myself in recent years (stuff of sadness, in my doubting, not fury and certainty) and felt somewhat fraudulent as I posted positively here without any mention of them
It wasn’t good today, George, but it was just one match and if you’re anything like me you wouldn’t have found it half as painful were you not so well acquainted with how others will react to the game.
For me, that’s what exacerbates the disappointment tremendously and turns it into something truly horrible, as opposed to normal lows and worries.
Also, if you were going to stick it to the team and manager in defeat for once, you really should have included Ramsey’s electing to shoot, off balance, with defenders in front of him: a 1 in 10 shot- if you were properly set!- when there was a simple pass to his right to create a very dangerous situation. Awful choice. Not what we’re about. Not what Wenger has spent his life coaching them to do
There were many serious head shakes from Wenger today but that might have been the most serious of all. You take that shot, maybe, if you’re work is done and the game won, or if the games lost and you don’t give a shit and just want a shot in frustration.
It summed up the gap between where we should have been – ‘this game is important, and could be very difficult; we have to be totally at it and make smart choices; good chances might be in short supply; use movement, passing and speed intelligently to try get them disorganised and give us that precious space; first goal could be key’- and where we were on the day.
Also, the goal was a near carbon copy of the one Carroll scored about five years ago. Bugger.
Coventry, Villa and now West ham maybe we shouldn’t play teams in light blue first game of the season I just wanted to cry. I missed the last eight minutes because I went into a gospel show do just prayed we would somehow get three goals in the last few minutes and im an atheist.
When the guy started to sing Smile followed by oh happy day I just thought that’s easy for you to sing your teams not just been beaten 2_0 on the opening day of the season.
Then the female vocalist told us that from the deepest despair comes the greatest victories and at last I could start feeling empathy and connection.
I think the disappointment today was compounded by the genuine feeling we could win the league and our team was on form and ready for fight. The fact that there was no ref to blame or breakaway goal just makes it worse it was all our fault.
I felt we played the ball quite long from the off and ignored the full backs on to many occasions. It was like we had forgotten how to play with Giroud up front no one wanted to get near him or beyond him making his control totally ineffective.
When your not clicking going forward it is vitally important you are efficient at the back and quite simply we weren’t. The hammers were playing well around the pitch but weren’t carving us open we just gifted them two goals and one at one of the most important times in the match.
Palace will be difficult as will all of the games up till chelski by which time we don’t need to have put so much pressure on ourselves that we feel its a must win so early in the season.
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I think match reviews are better left until a day later when the writer is more calm and has a better sense of perspective.
Whoever signed Andrew’s holiday chitty fucked up.
Well, it hurts. It certainly didn’t work today. Around at a friends, I convinced him to take a stream with some foreign language. Boy, I’m so pleased about that.
After the match we matched the movie Killer Joe. The multiple dysfunction worked as a big distraction for me – not being much if a one for films, and with no alcohol to supposedly drown any sorrows, (that’d never work for me anyway), I have to time my way home so that I don’t see MOTD2. Thuck that.
This may or may not help. While I match home I’ll be singing this in my head.
From the album Conversation Peace (good for aftv?), Tomorrow robins will sing:
Sleep well. Start again tomorrow.
Very poor performance, we seem to be a bit slow off the mark these days. There have been a number of reasons for this phenomena in recent years, but cannot fathom today’s performance, other than listen to the words of Wenger, they played badly, but were a bit undercooked compared to West Ham. I agree, we should have set up more solidly to make sure we did not lose if we were a bit below par, but it seems Wenger, or the team seem reluctant to do this in early stages of the season.
A bad day at the office…..when we are good, we are very very good….when we are bad etc.
I think we were first and foremost , pants, but against a fitter team who played well, and played to stay in the game as long as possible in the hope we would shoot ourselves in the foot, and unfortunately, we sometimes oblige in such situations. Cech had a bad day…..he will now know he sometimes gets less protection than he may be used to…..but he will adjust and perform. Ox and debuchy have not played so many games lately, at times, it showed. Coq seemed confused with Santi elsewhere. We lacked zip players, they is just coming back, but are there hints we have a slight dependence on Alexis? I am not saying we do, just being rhetorical.
I do not know why the players or bench allowed clear issues to persist, but I do know they will sort it. The critics and pundits will come out with their cliches, some may even come out with that quote falsely attributed to Einstein, but the players and staff will just get to work and improve on this performance.
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I’m glad I forgot to ask my son to record the game……there was a fucking earthquake not far from where I am last night…..
One day perhaps we’ll lose and there won’t be the feeling that complacency had crept in yet again. After all, this is the hammers we’re talking about. That must have bust a few pools coupons.
It’s hard looking back on a losing performance where one cannot blame the ref…or injuries…or the opposition playing like gorillas. This was just a bad, bad performance and really the only player to emerge with credit was the Ox, and to a lesser extent Olly and Natcho.
When we beat Everton in that Asia cup I said “The closest they came was from the free kick on the right (our bête noir I feel) which created the chance that Petr saved so well” This time Petr fooked it up, not that he was given any support from the back line. Their second was not much better in terms of the defensive qualities we didn’t bring to bear.
We seemed to be playing at ¾ pace and to make things worse, were frequently caught in possession. For sure, all the positive signs of preseason vanished to the extent that instead of being on top at the time of writing, we’re stone bloody last. Yeek.
There is such a big difference between being pants + losing, and being pants + winning (Man Utd).
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Don’t get robins around here at this time of the year, Rantetta. Btw, your link didn’t work for me.
Spot on PG. A disappointing performance and result. I also agree with Arsene that WH were ahead of the fitness curve than out boys cos they looked it. They reacted much quicker and generally looked much sharper than us even before the first goal went in. One thing I’m confident about though is the bounce-back-ability of our team and I’m sure Palace can’t come any sooner for the boys.
On a side note: Payet……what a game he had!
I had the dubious pleasure of watching the game on a flickering internet feed via Twitter which took some of the sharp visual distress away. We seem to be in a bit of a scoring rut at home over the past few games and excluding the final day romp against the Baggies. Four of our past five home games just one goal (?). Not sure why beyond the obvious point of the visitors defending deep and in numbers. Most unArsenal.
What does seem to have dried up are the occasional goal from our centre and full backs which, when we are really blowing in front of goal, has turned a game.
However off to Selhurst Park on Sunday and a confident Palace aiming in their turn to overturn the terrible run they have against us. I cant therefore see Pardew parking any buses. An excellent opportunity for the players to correct the disappointment of the opening day.