100 Comments

“People Want Success. It’s Like Coffee, They Want Instant” *

My fellow Positivitas, another Sunday has rolled round and with our fourth game of the PL season, has settled. I think we are all now a little more confident and able to raise our eyes to look forward and upward.

The game yesterday was predictable in form.

We dominated possession, pushed the home side back throughout the 90 minutes and rendered them impotent (in any genuine football sense), and earned our expected three points. All Toon had to offer was stout defence, which was to their credit, and mindlessly stupid attempts to boot their way back into the game, normally through Coquelin’s shins, which was not. At one point it appeared the Toon players had lost their collective minds as Marriner had to pull out card after card. Had they found themselves down to nine men, or less, then they would have had only themselves to blame.

“Professional” footballers? Don’t make me laugh.

Some comment has been made concerning the sending off and that it had a significant influence on the outcome of the game. I don’t think so. We had dominated the game before the Serbian got his marching orders. We dominated the game exactly the same afterwards. Newcastle were pinned like a butterfly on a mounting board before the 16th minute, they remained pinned to the 93rd minute. I would agree that there are some games when a sending-off can be pivotal, just not yesterday.

Credit to young Francis. I suspect he was targeted by McLaren on the basis that, as a young player, he would lose his head and retaliate. He kept a commendably cool demeanour and let Marriner do his job. I say that maturity and good sense is another indicator of how far, and how fast, the young Frenchman has developed since his return from Charlton.

As for what I thought we did well yesterday I was hugely impressed by the work of both full backs. Defensively they had almost nothing to do but both worked tirelessly to support the attack, to offer an outside option around the Barcodes’ banks of four, and Hector was unlucky to miss out on the penalty that his excellent touch had caused. Both Nacho and Hector used the ball sensibly, passed carefully. A pleasure to watch. Against the lesser sides the attacking contribution of our full backs can be crucial. I would like to see both taking a few pot shots as well.

Good performances from Santi and Aaron, Gabriel sharp and ready to go as a starter, if required.

Less well?

I hardly need to point of the finishing, with Theo and eventually Olly not converting chances that on another day would have given us a far more comfortable afternoon. To be fair to both, only one was a wild miss, with Krul making two good saves for the others. Our lack of quality finishing concerns me, it concerns Wenger, I have no bloody doubt it concerns Theo and Giroud. Hard work needed in training and Danny back after the International break offers the answer, I suspect.

What the opposition did well?

Colloccini is such a good centre back I wonder what he has done wrong to have had to play for Newcastle for the past seven years, especially when you see some of the talentless donkeys signed by CL clubs in England, Spain, Italy and Germany in the years since 2008 (Yes Pepe I am referring to you among others). Coloccini was a rock yesterday in the air and on the ground. Excruciating that the Argentine was the one that deflected in Ox’s shot for the winner yesterday.

I salute you Fabricio as a worthy opponent.

On the “looking upwards” vibe we have slipped into fifth in the table on the strength of probably playing about 85-90% of our potential. Citeh remain the team to beat. Interesting next round of PL games though. We have Stoke at the Ems, assuming they still have 11 players eligible to play.

Elsewhere Manyoo at home to Liverpool, Chelsea at Goodison and most intriguing Citeh travel to Selhurst Park. Both Mancs side face tricky games, and if Chelsea are going to revive, then they face a battle against Everton and a pissed off Martinez after their behaviour with Stones.

Small steps in a long campaign.

Enjoy Sunday!!

*Sir Bobby Robson (as if you didn’t know ) 18 February 1933 – 31 July 2009

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100 comments on ““People Want Success. It’s Like Coffee, They Want Instant” *

  1. I thought overall, we played well.I don’t understand how anyone can think we played badly.

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  2. Instant success……heard Liverpool, Chelsea, Spurs, and unbelievably, Southampton fans on the phone ins calling for their respective managers heads. We are in an age when anything other than instant success is branded catastrophic failure by the cry babies…..sorry, mentally fragile.
    Still, at least the Palace fans seem happy with their lot at the moment.

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  3. Good write up Andrew on a pretty solid performance against a bunch of thugs seemingly under the lurid impression they were playing for Ferguson in the 50th Game. You have to wonder where Mr Poverty McClaren gets his footballing ideas from …

    Penalty shout aside (and it defied belief that both Ref and linesman missed the most obvious penalty of the year) I thought the officials did extremely well in very trying circumstances. Much to Martin Keown’s evident disappointment on MOTD, our lads did not get sucked in or retaliate in the boot face of provocation, leaving the ref to deal with the miscreants (aka the whole miserable side) and Marriner did not otherwise disappoint.

    My already slender regard for McClaren took another nose dive as a result of primitive ‘tactics’ which, had they been on show in the Potteries, would likely seen Stoke slung out of the division for a cooling off season or two. Well, maybe wishful thinking on my part but it made for grim viewing and I’d love to see the zombie club of the north east relegated asap. And with them their motley band of supporters who disgracefully booed every correct decision from the officials.

    In the meantime a hefty @fa fine would do nicely, thank you very much.

    Favourite moment of the match?

    The outstanding Monreal pass hit on the volley to restart an attack which was executed with such Berkampesque aplomb that it was worthy of a Man of the Match award all of its own. And from a player we are repeatedly told by online ‘experts’ is simply not good enough for Arsenal.

    Rather like a few of our online ‘experts’, as it happens. Especially the impatient ones …

    Liked by 2 people

  4. In recent years when our players have retaliated at that ground, referees have punished our players, not the assailants. Diaby, Gervinho……the great ref assisted four goal recovery. Great self control yesterday, and none more so than with Coq.
    Keown is living in another time, don’t get me wrong, the thought of retaliation by some big brute against some of our players treatment is appealing to say the least, but in these days of Mike Riley and selective media scrutiny, it is our team who will always pay.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Who left the sheep-pen door open?

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  6. Thanks Andy Nic: top work as ever.We played very well until we got to their penalty area. We were a bit sterile once there, but I am sure that will come, especially when Alexis regains some form and sharpness. McClaren’s tactics were a disgrace. However, the referee was strong and it was good to see our players being protected (a little). What does seem clear to me is that we missed Ozil to mastermind the attacking operation – and we also doubly miss Wilshere when Ozil is sidelined. Or a player like that who unlocks defences either by passes or productive dribbles. Interesting that both my wife and Piers Morgan thought Ramsey had a poor game, while I called his MOTM status correctly. I say that not entirely for smug reasons, but rather to point out that a lot of what Ramsey does he does unnoticed. A little like the manager, I suspect. And also that when watchers get frustrated I suppose it is natural to look for scapegoats.

    But having said that, if people can’t see that the constant calling for a new striker has had an appallingly detrimental effect on both Giroud and Walcott then they need to have a serious rethink. Some brilliant characters are immune to criticism, and one or two players in a lifetime are so good they are never criticised, but for most constant support is needed. I hope this wretched transfer window shuts soon so that those players can relax and get on with being the very fine goal scorers they have already proved to be.

    And a last thought. My wife, who is a very astute judge of these things, believes that prising Petr Cech away from Chelsea has had a serious impact on their defence, and that Courtois, without the safety net of Cech behind him, is perhaps unable to marshal the troops in the same way as he did last year. It is an interesting idea, and shows that games are not just about what happens on the pitch, but mainly about what happens inside players’ heads.

    Liked by 5 people

  7. good write up A5, although I do think the sending off totally changed the game. Up until that point we were creating chance after chance and after working out a game plan all week and choosing a team to execute it the entire tactics changed in that moment. The space behind dissapeared, the quitened crowd suddenly roared and our best tools for the job were either missing or on the bench. I am convinced that if they had remained with eleven men perversely we would have won by a greater margin.
    In the end overcoming the unexpected difficulties shows we can adapt and find yet another way to win when neccessary.

    Liked by 4 people

  8. It never stops being funny when pundits like Keown and Guillit show their total lack of knowledge of the rules, they said “Arsenal should have crowded round the ref” when fouled or at the very least “crowded round the player who committed the foul”, when under the rules to do either is meant to lead to bookings for the players doing such actions.
    It really stinks of the tried and trusted demonstration of stupidity the good old “in my day” it was ok. It also explains why dirty nasty tackles get dismissed by so many pundits, as “in my day” we could tackle from behind, go right through the player, assault the keeper(that one is for the older posters”.

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  9. Rafael Hernández ‏@RafaelH117 12h12 hours ago
    Real Madrid played a match for the first time in 50 years without a single youth product. Barça needs to watch out or they are next.

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  10. it seems Kingsley Coman is joining Bayern Munich from Juventus, and that Draxler will be KDB replacement at Wolfsburg.
    Cue complaints from the WOB and AAA that Arsenal have not signed both.

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  11. anyone see the major mistake in this telegraph article, and I’m not talking about their transfer gossip

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/arsenal/11833523/Wenger-ready-to-abandon-Benzema-in-favour-of-50-million-hitman.html

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  12. I broke a golden rule and stayed on watching TV coverage after the final whistle yesterday. History teaches me that if you stick a manager who has lost in front of the camera they will talk ill considered rubbish and McLaren did not disappoint yesterday in his defence of Mitrovic.

    Apparently every card was Marriner overreacting. Mitrovic was “clumsy” ?!?!

    Here is a little tip Steve – if your players keep kicking people and trying to rough up the opposition they will receive yellow and red cards. If they receive yellow and red cards they will not be available to play for the struggling fairly clueless football club of which you have the dubious honour of currently managing. And therefore you will be gone, very, very soon. You are the manager so have a go at managing that rabble masquerading as professional footballers in black and white stripes.

    It may be McLaren has been out of the PL too long – his performance yesterday was pathetic.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. And thank you to the draftsman who set the layout (AA?)

    Looks much better and easier to read

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Thanks Andrew, love the photo too. Two of the greates football managers you will ever see. Things worked out well for Newcastle after they sacked Bobby Robson…almost as well as they are working out for the current owner after he sacked Pardew.

    An ode to the ruins of St.Jame’s Park:
    Look at the work of the Newcastle fans all ye mighty football fan supporters groups and self-promoting wrong colour scarf waving narcissists out there,
    And despair.

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Less the heckles from the crowd but the aggressive meedjah led witch hunt of several important Arsenal players continues and not all of them can or will survive that process.
    Will th AFC fans allow themselves to be trolled this way?

    Off the pitch you have Gary Neville etc.
    On the pitch you have to hold your nerve like Coquelin yesterday and hope your bones don’t snap.

    The old one-two for Coquelin this week. Heckled in the meedjah, by the not so great and not very good (G.Neville was never that good a player!) , wound up on the pitch by divers one week and cloggers the next, he’s passing the tests well don’t we all agree? Good passing from him yesterday too.

    All the above can also helpfully explain why the meedjah are trolling the AFC fans about Schneiderlan atm. Pits fooking hilarious because it means they have to airbrush the club captain the leader they say AFC doesn’t have and themost important signing made by the club since the stadium move out from their narrative: Arteta. And wasn’t it good to see him play again?

    Safe to conclude the Newscorp pedlars, they really don’t like The Arsenal. There is some evidence!

    In light of the above the official deserves some praise for stamping down on the stomping during that first half. He was only doing his job, and we don’t see that often enough.

    Liked by 4 people

  16. Yep, 128 days on top wasn’t any kind of challenge for the PL in 13/14?In fact it wasn’t real at all just some bloke near Grantham in a bedsit making the stats up.
    Good article and thanks.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. Small pat on the back for George as the hen that laid the golden egg of Positively Arsenal, 50,000 comments passed this morning.

    Liked by 5 people

  18. My apologies Mills – i have removed the silly post to which you refer. An oversight that it appeared.

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  19. Nice one Andrew. I do, however, agree with ‘a or b ‘ in that I think the sending off was pivotal in that it say them back and negated a lot of our attacking speed and ability to get in behind.

    Nonetheless we played very well I think and the finishing ( or current lack of) does not concern me at all. its a cyclical thing and we’re 5th having scored only one goal ourselves. I’ll take that quite happily.

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  20. We can place the Groaner’s dismissal of Arteta into context:

    Vermaelan was equally dismissed. He’d had bad injuries and struggled to recover. That didn’t mean he was never any good.

    And we can see that Tommy still has the potential to have a season or two where he can again touch those levels he reached before that original ankle problem which disrupted his time at AFC. Will be fun to watch the Roma-Barca games if the opportunity presents itself. Some people think he had inherent flaws as a CB but all players have pluses and minus to their game, it’s when they struggle for full fitness that they really struggle.

    e.g.: I suspect Chambo was not 100% yesterday (hobbled off?). Not injured, he might just need another few games before his technique tightens up, before he builds up more stamina, and is more consistent (bear in mind he’s not had a long run since the original knee injury so stamina levels can and will improve). What was noticeable was that after he realised early on that he must look drunk to people who were watching the match that he chose to play a more efficient and simple game, and it paid off for him in the end. All a part of the learning processing I guess.

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  21. Dante is joining Wolfsburg from Bayern Munich.

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  22. Thank you Andrew, A great day yesterday all round I thought. The Chelsea and Liverpool games were the icing on our cake. Many of us have spotted a change in refereeing over the past year or so and yesterday was a perfect example. Not a perfect referee by any means – the booking of Santi was ludicrous and the penalty decision silly – but they are human the point is he tried to ref it properly. Imagine Marriner in charge in that mood during the 50th game and Man U would have been playing with nine men.
    Imaging more refs actually enforcing the laws of the game and maybe, just maybe Eduardo, Ramsey and Diaby experienced different careers.

    Liked by 5 people

  23. That is a coincidence about Dante with my discussing talentless clodhoppers

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Oh and in an interview Chamberlain blames Arsene for his poor form. It’s because he’s not been picked and is therefore not fully up to match speed. If he really said these things he needs to go apologise to the boss pronto.

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  25. Arsenal scout Brian McDermott was at the Bournemouth v Leicester City game yesterday, maybe that is why AFC have been linked with that Leicester player today. Guess work from the journos. surprised we were not linked with Callum Wilson again, after all he scored his 4th goal of the season yesterday.

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  26. Thats no problem Andrew, it was a shock to see it on here!
    At least you guys weed the AAA out, over at UA there’s always some sneaky weasel turning up spouting the Le Goad clichés.It really gets really boring to keep reading the same out crepe.
    August is always a really strange part of the season,sometimes I wonder if it would be better to get the Internationals out of the way first then let the teams get a real flow going? Lets hope the linesmen can brush up on the rules during the break, at least Adam will be missing against Joke City.The Chelsea games going to be a big one, nows our chance with them…
    Hope you guys have a great Sunday.Cheers!

    Liked by 3 people

  27. Andrew Nicoll never disappoints with his post match reports. In my opinion, the most important takeaway from is that opening picture of two of the greatest football managers that have graced the pitches of Europe and England in the modern era. It represents the stark the contrast between the fortunes of Newcastle and Arsenal.

    Maybe Andrew wanted to make a point about owners (and fans) who demand “instant” success as exemplified by the bleatings of poster,Sean. Nowhere is it better exemplified by the diametric divergence between both clubs since Sir Bobby was unceremonious booted out of Newcastle’s management at the start of the 2004.season because of a poor start.

    Here is the Wikipedia entry on Sir Bobby’s tenure at Newcastle:
    ” Robson guided Newcastle from bottom of the Premier League to a fourth-place finish in the 2001–02 season.The following season, Newcastle finished third, ensuring qualification for the Champions League for the second consecutive year. Despite the qualification of third place however, Robson was unable to guide Newcastle through the Champions League qualifying rounds and the club was pushed back into the UEFA Cup for the 2003–04 season. At the end of the 2003–04 season, Newcastle United finished fifth in the table, five points short of the Champions League qualifying fourth place but reached the semi-finals of the UEFA Cup before losing to Marseille.
    Robson held the Newcastle post until 30 August 2004, when he was dismissed by Freddy Shepherd, after a poor start to the Premier League season. The previous year, Sir Bobby had guided Newcastle to 5th position.”

    A manager who was a living legend after 36 years in management including a relatively successful spell as English national team manager as well as boss of some of the biggest and most famous clubs in England and Europe such as Fulham, Ipswich Town, PSV Eindhoven (2 tenures), Sporting, Porto, and Barcelona. Booted out of after a poor start. At this rate Wenger should have been retired to Nancy from whence he came.

    Since then what has Newcastle become the laughing stock of the premier league, continuously fighting against relegation. A mid-table finish, much less European qualification, is a mythical dream to the most optimistic of Toon supporters. Freddy Shephard and the big boys have long cashed out to Mike Ashley and his “cockney Mafia” who simply use it as a merchandising vehicle for his Sports Direct outfit. Newcastle is now a selling club who have mastered the art of annually stocking the playing staff with cheap young French imports with the goal of selling them as soon as they mature. They are nore French than any outfit assembled by Arsene Wenger who was accused of building a Gallic club team at England’s expense; unlike Newcastle he built premiership winning teams with players who are now football legends.

    At least the owners of Arsenal has stood firm against the rabble who would have long fired the greatest ever manager this club has had, refusing to bow to the vagaries of a poor game or series of games. Meanwhile who wants to place a bet on the longevity of Mclaren or even Mike Ashby?

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  28. “Never fails to disappoint with his post match reports.”

    I try, Shotts I try!

    Liked by 4 people

  29. shotta do you realize that you have said andrew nicoll’s match reports always disappoint

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  30. Osman ‏@OsmanZtheGooner 6m6 minutes ago
    Everyone complaining about too many red cards this weekend but 2 weeks ago, everyone wanted Coquelin to be sent off for making 3 fouls.

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  31. Saints finally playing something like they did last season. Ruddy in for a busy second half at St Mary’s.

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  32. Andrew and Eduardo: Caught in the act, subliminally. I have atoned.

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  33. I think many of our expert Football Managers™ like to see themselves as some kind of a Mike Ashley.
    But where they get it all wronga is that they’d be the one taking out Wonga loans in order to purchase players as opposed to being the extornionate loan shark themselves…please refer to Abramovich/Gazprom’s pre-emptive sanction busting Rouble resuscitators. , Ashely himself, the much loved Ken Bates etc. etc. etc. for reference.

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  34. What the fuck is wrong with today’s pundits when it comes to refereeing. I am speaking of Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe on my feed and their opinion of the Whittaker sending off. They are primarily yesterday’s hard men which partially account for their views but don’t they understand that referees are here to apply the rules in the first 15 minutes as well as the last 15. A yellow card of fence in the first 15 is the same any time in the 90. Selective application of the rules is what gets English team in trouble when they go to Europe. Whittaker was foolish, end of story.

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  35. Fabianski and Bartley on the pitch, Swansea playing the good stuff beat the evil mancs.
    Can’t believe a bigger club never went in for either Ayew instead we’ve witnessed the likes of Liverpool and Tottenham, well, the less said the better about those nightmare stories. Though it was funny to see Soldado score on his Villarreal debut.

    If you re bored as an exercise you could try to imagine the Newscorp headlines, the groaning online 5th column if Rooneh played for the arsenal. On 300K a week!

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  36. Thank you very much Mr van Gaal – that will do nicely to finish a good weekend.

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Thought matches were won by the amount spent to but players? did man u not spend more than Swansea?

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  38. The Islington branch of the Morgan Schneiderlin fan club a bit muted tonight ?

    Liked by 4 people

  39. Well well well as Frank would say. United are so crap. Put that in your pipe and smoke it Ratty Neville. All that money spent and they look just as bad as last season lol. They need a UFC fighter at DM and a striker asap. Give us our points we rightfully won off Liverpool and we are sitting pretty. Still fancy us though. City know we have the blueprint to beat them and the pressure is on them now more than ever.

    Liked by 3 people

  40. That ought to shut ACLF up for about oh an evening

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  41. Gary Neville’s post game analysis after Utd’s defeat:

    Any one else have the impression that essentially he doesn’t like the football played by AFC, Swansea, Southampton, Man City, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich etc.

    That Utd are trying to catch up with.

    Yet is that not a little bit naive and arrogant?
    I think I am beginning to understand how the England coaches composed the genius plan of playing Wilshere behind Delph and Henderson…(sure he scored some good goals from there: but he can and will score more…

    Do the broadcasters push the pgMOB/FA/IFAB preference for gritball even though the game and clubs like Southampton, Swansea etc. have long moved on.

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  42. But dear Gary, if Utd

    “Lack pace in the front six” was it therefore not a teeny weeny bit arrogant flogging off Welbeck, who just happens to have out scored Ronneh when playing as a CF (for England) these past few seasons.

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  43. Great write up Anicoll.

    I found the following words from Arséne’s post match interview very interesting,

    “We won the ball without being too much in the challenge. That is always a sign of intelligence”.

    This perhaps suggests a profound difference in the way Arséne views the game and the way too many English fans do. I refer to the last Bergkamp Wonderland podcast, which I rarely listen to as it is rather boring but every so often I must remind myself how other fans think and say. There was quite a long discussion about a “tough tackling” defensive midfielder, the big physical presence all title winning teams have/had. I am also reminded of the comments made by Xavi Alonso in which he sounded rather perplexed at this aspect of the English game. To him tackling tended to be a last ditch option, interception, reading of the game was the sign of a top player. Is this a cultural difference?

    Liked by 2 people

  44. I think that’s fair to say, Fins. He was always just a gritty blood and guts guy. No difference between him and Barton imo. Thugs wearing football kits

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  45. Is it a cultural difference? I don’t know but watching the Chilean team for the last few WCs: I don’t think so.
    A style that has become associated with petty English nationalism maybe. But cultural? Nope.
    Hunter would be in his element on this thread.

    It’s possible to have a team where players tackle, dribble, etc. all together.
    Who play Football. Not hoofball (Fellaini a £30M player? Bentake? Carroll!!!).
    This is not a new concept!
    Most kids growing up and playing football in London do not agree with the likes of Carragher and Neville, their vision of football. Perhaps it’s because most kids now play on concrete?

    There’s nothing cultural about it. Anyone stating that AFC needs DM after the last six months of games from Coquelin is just a fucking idiot. In fact, they are D**Med. Or perhaps they are simply sheep who choose to repeat the lines fed to them by Newscorp.

    Liked by 1 person

  46. it seems Szczesny was outstanding for Roma in their 2-1 win over juve. Some World Class saves.

    Liked by 1 person

  47. Zelalem got brutal treatment in the Rangers game today, legs taken from under him after he had already passed the ball, then the offending thug stamped on Gedion as he lay on the ground.

    Refs are the problem with british football, until the protect the skilled players football in the UK will remain in the dark ages.

    Liked by 1 person

  48. reports in France say Man Utd have bid €50M for 19 year old striker Anthony Martial

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