Arsenal – It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves


Ship on the rocks

Ulaakut Positivistas,

A shortish post mortem.

We sustained a beating last night at St Mary’s. Given our run of form, and the almost routine despatch of our closest title rivals on Monday it looked a match we could expect at worst a point from. Klopp’s Red and White Army had run the fox to ground on our behalf earlier in the day, and their efforts had provided us another opportunity to take over the lead in the Premier League. Given that in recent weeks we have been playing the best football in England, despite our injury list, scoring goals, defending resolutely from front to back our confidence seemed justified. Arsene sent out the side who had done such an efficient job against Citeh, no underestimation of the Saints in what has been, traditionally, a tricky fixture to win.

As matters turned out the evening proceeded very differently. A heavy defeat, a deserved defeat, a 4-0 scoreline that could have been worse on the night. I have no stunning insights as to the reasons for this. Rather like a number of Arsenal players and the bench by the time the third Saints goal had gone in I had been reduced to a state of head shaking, eye rolling numbness.

Fair play to the Saints. An extraordinary goal from Martina, unstoppable. A player making his PL debut ffs. And three more, all stoppable to varying degrees. But as the evening ended probably a fair record of the distance between the teams I thought.

Bizarrely we really do seem to struggle against teams allegedly “in crisis”. Just four defeats so far this campaign but three against sides that we went into the game as strong favourites. First game of the season against the ‘Ammers we faced a side that had won just one in eight of their last PL games ( in 2014/2015), had changed manager and were being touted as probable relegation fodder. Same at West Brom with the Baggies who had lost five of their previous seven contests. The Saints had one PL point of the previous fifteen. There is a pattern of stumbling, though Gawd knows what underpins it. I saw no lack off of effort last night. I did not see our usual quality of crisp passing and inventive football.Against West Ham, against the Baggies we were a little unlucky and could have got something from the games with a little luck. Last night we really deserved nothing.

I have thus far avoided the mainstream and social media in an effort to sustain a relatively fuzzy warm holiday spirit. I suspect both will be tearing into our central defenders this morning wit carnivorous enthusiasm. It was probably one of Gabriel’s greatest performances, almost career defining !  Multiple names almost certainly are now being touted as imminent arrivals via the approaching window to sort out last night’s defensive errors. What struck me last night was not that our defence was prone to error but how little we created going forward. Had Martina’s effort been the only goal of the night we barely looked at any time likely to get past Stekelenburg. A number of our players contributed too little, for too long. With Giroud locked down by Fonte and Van Dijk until the very last phase of the game, at 3-0 down, there was very little variation in how we tried to attack, to ‘do’ things.

Even on a bleak night one should highlight the good. Both our full backs I thought did well. Brief though his appearance was Iwobi brought a little spark to a grim final few minutes. Beyond those three, for once, I am struggling.

Right, having rummaged through the cadaver, let us raise our eyes to the coming days. The visit of Bournemouth allows us another bite at the cherry ( Sorry) with Citeh and Leicester not in the ring until Tuesday. Unlike the clubs in crisis referred to above the AFCB come to the Emirates on a decent run of form and therefore the hoodoo should not apply. A strong response required. We have the players to invest our optimism in. Destiny holds her hand out toward us again.

Enjoy your Sunday.



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67 comments on “Arsenal – It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves

  1. For some reason I’m not able to like your post Andy… so better make a comment. One to forget I think…. it was a LONG day yesterday… let’s move on to the next game.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I shall not take it personally NB – as you say one to file and forget


  3. After the first off-side goal which was a once in a lifetime strike, we were unable to respond. Having watched it again, I’m minded to think the officiating had more to do with it than the spirited display from the saints players. We we not allowed to play because the referee allowed over physical play and the second goal, which was a direct result of a deliberate foul” killed it.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. I think you deserve a medal Andy. No one would have blamed you for skipping the blog today, no one. I can’t say much as I have to try to think of something to say in advance of tomorrow’s game. Don’t want to use up the few grains of enthusiasm and paltry collection of words I have in this post mortem.
    I will just say we’ve had miserable, bleak, unhappy days before and Positively Arsenal has always been there to encourage and sustain us. I hope everyone tries to remain strong and supportive and not give in to the desire to pick over last night’s debacle and vent pointless anger.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. We had a setback Stew, as did Leicester. Citeh’s setback was last Monday. Hopefully a bump in the Title road rather than anything more significant. Every side everywhere will have that kind of cock up when nothing goes right. I am expecting a positive reaction tomorrow.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Old fart’s thoughts:
    It’s easy to say that St Mary’s is not our favorite ground. A bit like Stoke in a way…. and let’s not forget that 5-0 whipping we took there during the 70/71 season… our first double! Equally easy is to say that there were dubious non/wrong decisions made that allowed their first 3 goals. More obviously, we were suffering from a surfeit of lampreys and that this was a day where we were lucky to get 0. On a day where we needed a bit of get up and go to lead the league, it was fairly clear that we’d gotten up and gone well before Southampton’s first goal. Indeed the Saints appeared to have taken Arsenal’s strategy used so productively against City of conceding possession and hitting on the break.

    We were definitely out of sorts, to my mind Nacho and Rambo were the only two who deserved their pocket money but can we, the supporters, really point fingers for our one truly abysmal performance during calendar 2015. We’re top of the year’s league……..personally I’ve no doubt that we’ll finish top at the end of the season as well.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. well done A5 in difficult circumstances. Waking up this morning with the realisation the nightmare wasnt a nightmare but was actual reality was well …. a nightmare!
    As Steww and many of the comments suggested yesterday, this was going to be a tough game and steam was running out.
    With the officials watching the game from the sidelines rather than taking part this wasnt a good time to be below our physical best. many said we didnt start well but with Giroud and Nacho going close we could have scored the all important first goal that would have made the game completley different. It would of allowed us to sit back and counter which has been the decisive theme in the PL this season. As it was the first goal although offside in the build up was a familar failing, allowing a player to have a cup of tea before he hits the ball as hard as he can will always leave you in trouble danny rose etc.
    The second goal was a clear foul but once again leaving a two on two situation on 55 minutes when your not controling the midfield was impatient and risky. After the second goal we seem to start moving the ball quicker and i was dreaming of a late flourish only for the rug to be pulled out from under our feet. once more the inept officials had a hand in the goal calling a corner when it should off been a goal but once again we compounded the error by bad marking.
    Basically we lost the midfield in a very physical game and the foxes supporters trugeing their way accross stanley park in deep depression found actually their lead at the top had improved even it was the goaldifference.
    Tomorrow we have a chance to kick on again but the 40 points at the half way stage has gone, meaning if Arsenes 80 pt + total is correct we will have to have a better in the second half of the season than we have in the first and knowing the standard of 2015 weve had and the away games at both manchester and liverpool clubs + the spuds to come its going to be difficult. However the 71 side got a tanking from stoke and the 89 side from blackburn around the festive period and both teams said it was those games that spurred them to the title.

    Liked by 5 people

  8. So if you are a Southampton supporter you must be wondering how come your players have only now decided to start turning up for games following a prolonged period of absence.

    If you are a football supporter you must be wondering how four officials fail to spot – and stop – THREE illegal goals in the same match.

    If you are BT Sport, you might wonder why Savage is allowed anywhere near a microphone with such gleeful gems as “it’s in the back of the net so it doesn’t matter” despite querying the legitimacy of the play preceding these game-changing moments.

    And if you are an Arsenal supporter you must be wondering why BT Sport commentator Ian Wright sought to ‘legitimise’ Long’s deliberate trip of Kos that led to one of the goals, on the grounds that as he – Wright – used to do the same thing, it must be okay.

    We must, of course, congratulate Southampton for taking full advantage of the ref’s reticence to apply the rules of the game, to curb the physical shenanigans of a side desperate for a result and capitalise on a team playing a prolonged period of the season with half the first team out injured.

    So can we expect Southampton to play like this the rest of the season? Will any other referee allow them to?

    Seems a tad unlikely.

    Meanwhile, we will bounce back against Bournemouth and we should then look back at 2015 as a year of great progress and continued firming up of the foundations.

    I have no doubt 2016 is set to be an absolute cracker for the club.

    Liked by 6 people

  9. In my initial post game comment yesterday I said something along the lines of the players thinking it was going to be a stroll in the park. Our AlabamaGooner took issue with that and upon reflection I have to agree with her. In trying to make a general criticism of fans who get over ebullient after a big win I lumped them and the players in one big sloppy bucket and got it wrong.

    To be honest it was my impression from the start of the game that our team was trying to pace themselves and manage the game from start to finish given that most would be playing on Monday. Somebody said earlier it seemed we hoped to score an early goal and sit back. The problem was Southampton refused to cooperate especially Shane Long who was up for it from the start. Despite Kos trying to knock the wind out of him early doors he clearly had instructions to press our central defenders. This he pursued by fair means or foul, often by the latter as soon as it became apparent that the ever-corpulent Jon Moss would not penalize overly physical play. The wonder goal by the dude from Curacao knocked the wind out of our sails and as much as we huffed and puffed we just couldn’t take the initiative away from Southampton.

    My impression is with our squad down to bare bones we need always to play our A-game to be successful. If the opponents are more aggressive and the referee too lenient it will be difficult to succeed which was exactly the case yesterday. I suspect Bournemouth will come to the Emirates buoyed by what they saw of us yesterday. Our fans will need to rise from their holiday slumber and be that proverbial 12th man on Monday to give the boys that extra zip to do the job. Until we can get some injured players back and bed-in that new signing, whom the press is so sure is a done deal, it will be a struggle.

    Welcome to the real world Positivas. There are ups and downs before achieving success. We don’t have unlimited resources but with good management and positive support we can do it.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. I see a new petition to the FA has Moss’ name on it


  11. A5 – Jon needs to be kicked down to the Championship or League One. Both his weight and sight needs work.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. He has worked tirelessly for several seasons for the club Shotts – everyone is allowed one poor performance.

    Other than the trip on Kosc which Moss either a) didn’t see or b) deliberately conspired with his three colleagues to ignore I was not unduly offended by the referees efforts.

    Roger East tomorrow and that nice Mr Taylor on Saturday – hopefully there will be no need to rely on either over the next few days.


  13. Andy, you should have gone to Specsavers

    Liked by 4 people

  14. A5 – That non existent corner boils my blood. He lost control of the game after the 1st 15 minutes which suited the Saints very well.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Come, come, the Arsenal have taken on too many Southampton players?

    It is obvious that the Arsenal had to give the Saints, a nice Christmas present!

    We lost Alexis, thanks to Mr. Moss. We lost Santi, so no Christmas stroll for the remaining Arsenal players.

    Last New Year it was the traffic jam, his year too much cold turkey?

    Come on, let us all have a smile.

    PG, excepted, of course.



  16. A bad day, worryingly, looked like fatigue may have played a part. Maybe a few heroic performances have taken a toll on some. Then, some of the opponents had the game….and goal of their lives.
    There are times when I wish we would cease these collective brain freezes that mean a group of players who have at times stopped silva, aguero , lewandowski, and muller in their tracks …….Seem so often vulnerable to a journeyman clogger who is permitted to bend the rules. There is no doubt, we are often undone by players unworthy of being on the same pitch as some of our own, if that sounds arrogant, no apologies.
    There are times when I wish someone would realise this is not going to be our day, and organise us defensively accordingly.
    There are times when I wish we had more who could stand up to a physical onslaught, who could cope as well in the wind and rain as they could on a sunny day at the Emirates.
    But alas, such things are not fundamentally in this teams or managers DNA, and we will fail or succeed by at least attempting our free flowing game. Of course it will not always work, when we are good, we are very very good, but when we are bad……
    As for the officials, I don’t know if that is agendas, bias or incompetence we see so regularly, with yesterday, I suspect the latter.
    They say it evens out in the end. The next time Arsenal get handed three goals that should not have stood in one match, I might start believing them.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. Ha, that old reprobate Northbank shows his face. How dare he question the courage of Andy Nic?

    It would seem to me, that Bob Wall had much to bewail the Islington hoodlums that had to mimic the “yellow dwarves” of Glasgow Rangers. Saturday, 5th August, 1967 kick-off at 3 p.m.

    Arsenal we worried at the increasing episodes of football hooliganism at Highbury towards the end of the previous Season. Denis Hill-Wood went on to write about it in his ‘Message’ and secretary Bob Wall went on to write another full page. Bob attributed the problem to, “A group of ill disciplined teenagers who frequent the North Terrace,” who were not responding to appeals for better behaviour”.

    Alex Ferguson, so well-known now, played that day for Glasgow Rangers, with the hordes of “yellow dwarves” occupying the North Bank!

    Needless to say, despite Willie Henderson and his excellent work; Alex Ferguson being a player of lesser ability, could not score.

    The “yellow dwarves” originated when Glasgow Rangers played in Germany earlier in the ’60’s.

    Bob Wall, a man of substance, taking over from Harry John Peters, the locum secretary of the Arsenal from Knighton to Tom Whittaker.

    Bob Wall, wrote a book “Arsenal from the Heart”, and to confound the unwanted followers, forecast that:-

    •“As in big business the future shape of football will involve a top elite of companies.”

    •“The Arsenal teams of the year 2000 may not even play at Highbury.”

    •“I am certain that, within the next quarter of a century, the vast majority of grounds will become all seating stadia.”

    •Clubs building additional facilities in stadiums so that they can be used every day of the week.

    •“Personally I do not think it will be long before we see the formation of a Continental League.”


    Liked by 5 people

  18. Wow NOTH. That was some awesome predictions by Bob Wall. This club has had some wise leaders. Thank heavens the hooligans and charlatans did not take over.

    I must say Northbank will have something to say about being called a reprobate but I will console him by observing it takes one to know one. (Banned winky-thingy here.)


  19. When I wrote to Bertie in 69/70ish advising him to sign Mike Channon of Southampton – I was a formidably well informed at 10 to 11 years old I got a three paragraph letter signed personally by Bob Wall and acknowledging the qualities of Channon as well as assuring me the club were always on the trail of good players – I don’t think the word “squad” was included because it only existed in international football. Clearly Bob was write and I was wrong as we tidied away the Double a few months later, but perhaps the seed of my unshakeable faith as an Arsenal fan had been planted NOTH

    Liked by 2 people

  20. *right (I have not touched a drop)


  21. Shotta, Northbank will be an all-present at the bar. The courts of law being closed of course.

    I am surprised that nobody seems to have used “the Arsenal schlonged by the Saints”!!!

    Now to read Vlad Putin’s take on things; Very Boris Yeltsin, without the vodka!

    COTG, win or lose!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. we had the officials last night wrongly permit the first three goals – directly or indirectly – I ask the questions, have Arsenal ever in the memory of any on here, had 3 goals wrongly allowed for us in any one game, and if we have had 3 wrongly allowed goals for us in total so far this season. I very much suspect that the answer to both questions will be no, never. So it begs the extra question, as to why it happens against us. Why and how did the officials miss so much last night, why have we seen several refs stood down from BPL duty after other inept performances against Arsenal – Taylor and Dean spring to mind – AFC are one of the most attacking sides in the league, yet we rarely are awarded a penalty, is it 2 BPL penalties this season, compared to, I think 7 for Leicester City. Why for a number of seasons now are AFC players booked at a much lower rate of fouls than our opponents,

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Howard Webb analysis of the first three goals – mistakes by officials on all 3 but AFC can’t blame the officials too much for the defeat.


  24. Truly remarkable eddy

    The doing we got at St Marys down to dodgy refereeing, indeed all part of a widespread conspiracy or perhaps even one of a set of conspiracies of referees ?

    On a minor technical point do you think at any point whatsoever last night any official stopped us scoring a goal ?


  25. Eduardo (3.15pm) – strange, innit.

    Refs seem to bend over backwards to deny AFC penalties but can’t help but trip over their own laces to help Leicester (this season, at least). I also remember Manure going for years without a penalty awarded against them at Old Toilet.

    Yet it seems all these things are products of our imagination.

    Refs, eh?

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Pretty sure last night was the first and only time I saw the previously unflappable Ozil get hacked off with the overly close rotational attentions of a previously underperforming side determined, with the assistance of the ref’s ‘blind eye’, to stop us from scoring a goal.

    Liked by 2 people

  27. no anicol I did not see any clear sign last night that an official stopped us scoring a goal. But till the first goal was wrongly allowed there was little sign of Southampton scoring either.
    I don’t think anyone is suggesting that AFC were playing well last night, and that the ref robbed us of the win, I for sure have been very critical of our performance, but we will never know how the game would have turned out without the mistakes by the officials on the first 3 goals. The old saying is goals change games.


  28. Andy do you think being 2 down to goals that should not have stood might have had an effect on our players and theirs?
    Goals change game, they say, unfortunate goals more so.
    There is know telling the result if those goals had not stood. We may not have improved, they may have gotten stronger, but I can’t say

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Webbs comments at the end are insane, or at best illogical.Or gaslighting for another reason?


  30. players not switched on last night, relaxed their performance after city win


    Arsène Wenger says Arsenal were lacking “that subconscious strength in the mind” in their Boxing Day loss at Southampton.
    The Gunners missed the opportunity to go top of the Premier League as they slipped to a heavy defeat on the south coast.
    Southampton (a) – Highlights
    image: http://player.arsenal.com/videos/images/dotcom_article/e5e36adf2d60203d3c4284ae92c4820d?thumbIndex=9

    Video poster
    Wenger admitted it was a poor day at the office, and said his side must give a strong response against Bournemouth on Monday.

    “We were beaten in the challenges too much, we were not sharp enough to play our usual game and on top of that I think we were unlucky on the decisions for the first three goals and that was too much for us,” he told Arsenal Player.
    “[We were missing] the sharpness, that subconcious strength that is in the mind absolutely to win the game. You could see that we relaxed a bit after Man City and didn’t switch on enough here. They were, and that made the difference.

    “I think the players have a good mentality, a strong spirit and they will respond on Monday. We have to be intelligent enough to analyse what went wrong here.”

    Copyright 2015 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to http://www.arsenal.com as the source

    Read more at http://www.arsenal.com/news/news-archive/20151227/-we-missed-that-subconscious-strength-#fdbYfvvehktI7CcT.99


  31. ha ha ha NotH

    Reprobate is ok with me mate…. it’s the ‘old’ that fecking annoys me… good point Andy @3:41pm, the officials didn’t have any influence on us scoring goals.


  32. Mills I think Webbs comments last night are a clear sign of the attitude of ex refs and probably the refs we are dealing with game by game.
    The attitude that major mistakes can go against Arsenal, resulting in 3 wrongly awarded goals, but that it don’t matter, as Arsenal were not good enough to overcome the mistakes and that its all a bit of a laugh really, for me shows that there is a real bias deep rooted in the PGMOL.


  33. Moss decided from early not to call the game too tightly. It suited Long immensely who obviously had instructions to be agressive. He clattered Kos early on. Kos slammed in his back some time after. None of those fouls were called when they should have. He lost control thereafter. Allowing this type of physicality leveled the playing field for less technical players like Wanyama and Claise who gave Ozil and Ramsey hell. Remember that aggressive studs up tackle on Ramsey by Wanyama deep in the 2nd half which was only merited a foul and in that context a useless talking-to-both-players by Moss.

    No doubt in my mind that it was an inept refereeing performance by Moss which affected the game. But I have seen us overcome that and worse. Yesterday we didn’t seem to have the energy and quality to impose ourselves on them.


  34. thinking about the question – did the ref stop us scoring – well it could be argued that they did indeed contribute to us not scoring, if not actually make major goal cancelling decisions. You see if a team is allowed to rotational foul our players without a card, sometimes without even the foul being called, it not only lessens our game, but it encourages the opponent in their game plan. Man City were rotational fouling for half an hour on Monday, and within minutes of them getting their first card, AFC had taken the lead. Wanyama last night got away with several bookable challenges. Ozil was bodychecked several times, without even a foul being given. Fouls on Giroud went unacknowledged too, so I would say that these sort of decisions by the officials may very well have been a major factor in AFC not scoring last night. That and the fact that 3 goals wrongly being awarded against us, might just have had a negative effect on the Arsenal players performance too.


  35. I told my brother Shane Long’s early, soft yellow card would work against us and it eventually did. The two no-calls involving Shane Long reeked of a referee compensating for that harsh decision. I was only able to sense this because it has happened so many times in the past. Referee acts harshly against a player from the home side, gets the crowd on his back, spends the entire game trying to make up for it and it’s us who end up paying for it. This game brought me back to that famous 4-4 against Newcastle where Diaby was sent off.

    Fuck it, onward and upward. I’m more than confident that we’ll come back against Bournemouth and put things right again. Our next three games are against bottom of the table sides, two of which have been underperforming (Newcastle & Sunderland) so let’s set things right and keep moving forward. In comparison, Man City have three away games in a row at Leicester, Watford and Everton. We can be top of the table and carve out a significant lead if the players want it bad enough.


  36. Eddy-. The video evidence gives the “bad day at the office” (most of thought it was) a completely different slant. Cheers for putting that up.


  37. Jeebus Cristo Howard Webb. After clear video evidence you state Arsenal can’t blame the ref too much. Let Jon Moss try that shit with your old mucker, Red Nose Fergie.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. And on the penalty conspiracy theory we were awared the most penalties in 2014/2015 -7 – along with Citeh in the PL. Teams that attack more get more penalties.

    If I were Swansea, West Ham, Hull , Villa and Toon who only managed to persuade the referee to point to the spot once each in 38 games last year I would probably be more paranoid. You often hear little clubs moaning.


  39. Who are you talking too Andy?


  40. Seemingly Rangers have confirmed that Zelalem will stay with them for rest of the season.


  41. Egypt midfielder Elneny says he joined Premier League giants Arsenal
    Ahram Online , Sunday 27 Dec 2015
    Print Send

    Views:1979Mohamed El-Nenny
    Egypt’s Mohamed Elneny (Reuters)
    Egypt midfielder Elneny says he joined Premier League giants Arsenal
    Egypt midfielder Mohamed Elneny said on Sunday he has all but joined English giants Arsenal, sealing a dream move to the elite Premier League.
    The 23-year-old told Ahram’s Arabic news website that he had undergone a medical at Arsenal on Saturday and will put pen to paper on a contract with the Gunners later on Sunday.

    Elneny, a product of the youth academy of Egyptian club Arab Contractors, joins Arsenal from Swiss side Basel for 6.5 million sterling pounds. The club is yet to confirm the deal.

    He has been a key figure for Basel since joining the club in January 2013, helping them to three league titles. He has also produced some superb displays this season, scoring six goals in all competitions – two in the Swiss league, two in the Europa League and two in the Swiss Cup.

    Elneny was widely praised for his goals in the Europa League, the continent’s secondary club competition, as he helped Basel reach the last 32, where they will meet French side Saint Etienne in February.

    His goals included a screamer which led Basel to a 2-1 comeback victory away to Italy’s Fiorentina in their opening Group I clash in September.

    His arrival could help ease the midfield injury crisis of Arsenal, who are having to do without the likes of Santi Cazorla, Francis Coquelin and Mikel Arteta as they bid for their first Premier League title since 2004.

    Elneny joins a long list of Egyptian players to taste Premier League football in the past 15 years.

    The list includes Ibrahim Said (Everton), Mido (Tottenham Hotspur, Wigan Athletic, Middlesbrough, West Ham), Hossam Ghaly (Tottenham Hotspur, Derby County), Mohamed Shawky (Middlesbrough), Amr Zaki (Wigan Athletic, Hull City), Ahmed Elmohamady (Sunderland, Hull City), Gedo, Ahmed Fathi (Hull City) and Mohamed Salah (Chelsea).

    (For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)


  42. IFAB have conspired to deny football fans the same benefits in other sports enjoy.

    Argue against it if you like but then you’ll have to convince people that the data collected elsewhere doesn’t beat up, and you’ll have to present some draw of your own. But preferably on the right forum not this one

    If you can’t argue against the numbers please don’t use the word conspiracy when we have the conduct of the PGMOB and their 99% accuracy before us.

    Santi and Sanchez were hacked off in the same game and we didn’t make a song and dance about it because it was completely predictable (that’d be the above mentioned numbers and data).

    It’s predictable not just from the data and numbers collected over seasons now but because as gains simply describes we have seen it before.

    Southampton beat AFC the same way Norwich were able to grab a point courtesy of the the PGMOB rules football code. That’s not a debate. It is an observation supported by, again, the above mentioned data etc but also by the conduct of IFAB and the words of the PGMOB themselves.

    It’s a big topic and the drip drip push towards better standards neon pushed by other associations and now finally the FA is self-explanatory. This is not the forum for debating the refereeing crisis that has come close to breaking Football’s reputation (never mind FUFA/WADA etc).

    Liked by 2 people

  43. ‘scuse the many typos.


  44. Gotta say I can’t see any doubt about moss ‘s incompetence at one point on a saints break and Kos quite clearly took one for the team and obstructed the runner . I laughed out loud when he wasn’t booked and even Kos smiled at Per. When refs miss such obvious things you know they are dangerous and that proved that way.

    Liked by 3 people

  45. sounds like the lad would fit right in

    Mohamed ElNenny
    Great win boys thanks god for my goal tiki taka that’s our style hopp fc basel✌️


  46. A5 and Shotta told me I should get over here today, as sanity had returned from a very brief absence. Thanks, Andy, for writing a match review that no one wanted to write.

    Shotta, I agree with you whole-heartedly today. Your observation that the team was playing with one eye on the fact that the same 11 will likely have to play tomorrow is a fair assessment, and one that struck me as well. Especially so, once the game felt out of reach. FH made the point late on yesterday’s blog (go back and read it if you haven’t) that there could be a realization that expending untold amounts of energy chasing what was likely to be only one point didn’t really make a whole lot of sense, when 6 points are on offer from two upcoming home games. “Running around a bit”, “showing some fight” might have made the fans less angry, but it didn’t really make any logical sense, when viewed in the light of the hectic schedule. I guess you could call that giving up if you were so inclined, but to me it’s accepting reality and being smart. Losing 2-0, losing 4-0, it’s still 3 points. And that two footed challenge by Wanyama on Aaron late in the game shows we were vulnerable to getting someone injured while aggressively chasing a lost cause. (Still no gifs of him squaring up to Wanyama. I am sad.)

    On we go to tomorrow, when the game is on TV in the US while most of us have to work. And you guys in the UK don’t get the game on TV at all? So weird.


  47. AlabamaGooner: These Brits are so lucky. When do they work?

    Liked by 1 person

  48. Maybe, Shotta, but we see more live football on TV than they do…when we’re not working. (Banned smiley)


  49. Anyone know what is up with Debuchy? Cannot say I noticed at the time, but apparently not on the bench……


  50. Well done, Andrew – not an easy task. I have heeded steww’s wise words at 10:34 (without reading them until now) by staying away from all things football until now. I have to say the conspiracy stuff bores the pants off me. How anyone can think that people who are so clearly incompetent at their job as Mossy and Co were yesterday could at the same time be competent at maintaining the group secrecy required to run such a conspiracy is beyond me. But I guess I just have to jump over the usual suspects when they’re in that mode.
    Mandy – I would guess Debuchy is on his way. Chambers can double up at either RB or CM so he gets bench preference in the defensive positions. He looked very sprightly when he came on, I must say. And Debuchy knows he’s not going to get the game time to get himself back in the Euros reckoning. Now I’ve said that, you watch him start tomorrow.
    Great if Elneny has signed. He has a European pedigree but I don’t think participation in the Thursday League disqualifies him from the CL, does it? He’s been at Basel for 3 years and is only 23 years old. If AW rates him , that’s good enough for me. He’ll only get better with us.


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