159 Comments

Liverpool Then – Here’s Hoping?

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So the late ko at Anfield is going to be a test, in more ways than one I feel.

The team heads north going into the battle sitting insecurely in 4th spot, a single point in front of Liverpool, with a game in hand. The league positions alone would make this a big game, but it feels a lot more than just 3 points at stake.

Both teams are on poor runs, both managers are being blamed by very vocal sections of their fan-bases and both clubs have gone from title hopefuls to no-hopers as far as the media and the fan-bases seem concerned. Both teams need a win and one, or both, will definitely be disappointed come 7.22 p.m.

All I seem to see recently talked about is how poor our away form is,  against the current top 6 . The problem is,  and there is no getting away from it – It is poor. Of course that doesn’t mean it will stay poor. We can’t do anything about what has gone, but the players sure as hell can do something about what is to come.  I almost feel that the next few weeks ,these players will hold Arsene’s future in their hands. If they show the fight and togetherness needed to go on a good run, I believe Arsene will stay. However, if he sees anything less, I think he could decide his work with us is done. I stress, this is just my gut feeling, I could be completely wrong, he may stay if we go on a bad run, and he might equally leave if we go on a good one.

I also think this next few weeks could see the team staying together , with further building work going on in the Summer, if things go well. Or it break up as we know it ,with some players losing faith in the team or the club losing faith in some players, if things go badly.

The result will ultimately be all that matters today, but the application will be what is crucial going forward. If the players don’t show the spirit and application required, then Arsene will take the blame. And ultimately, this has to be the case.

I have no idea who should start, what tactics we should try or what shape we should use. That, thankfully is not my job or problem. I just want to see the players live up to the potential they have.

I believe in these players and our manager but I feel the moment of truth is upon them all. The club is coming to a fork in the road, and its up to the players to make the right turn.

I’m sure I’m coming across as a right drama queen, but I think this is a very important time for all concerned.

“Cometh the hour, cometh the men.”

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Come on you Gunners.

 

 

159 comments on “Liverpool Then – Here’s Hoping?

  1. Are they going to be allowed to sub him off,then we get the yellow

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  2. Xhaka would have got a straight red if he had made that foul.

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  3. Crooked bunch of arseholes Only thing missing is a red for one of ours for very little

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  4. we have gone out of this since we made the double sub.

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  5. I am not happy to report that Arsenal’s ppg is in continued free fall. I wonder why.

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  6. Surely Bould should be booked for ironically clapping the ref

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  7. only 3 minutes of stoppage time for us to save this

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  8. 76% passing in both halves

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  9. 3-1, lfc cut us open on the break

    looked a clear offside in the build up

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  10. End to fucking end

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  11. Arsenal down to 5th, 13pts off top with 12 games to play.

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  12. offside Dorigi no chance

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  13. FT: 3-1

    awful first half, played much better in second half, got nothing from the officials, can should have been off, and third goal had an offside in the build up. but when you play so badly for 45 minutes, its seldom you can get anything from a game.

    we have now conceded 31 goals in 26 games. that is 17 more than CFC, having scored the same as them.

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  14. Data does not lie. Pundits, journos, bloggers and tweeters can do all the lying and misleading.

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  15. Frankie Hobbs‏Verified account @Frankie_Hobbs 18m18 minutes ago

    When in doubt: book Granit Xhaka

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  16. Shotta @7:17 I dunno, you seem pretty happy to report it to me…

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  17. just seen a pundit say that Can not getting sent off and origi being offside in build up to the third game are not worth talking about, as the only thing that matters and that affected the result is Alexis not being started.

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  18. ****JAMIE****‏ @Arsenal_212 22m22 minutes ago

    REF A FUCKING CUNT

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  19. 2017 has been pretty poor, and in general not much fun to be an Arsenal supporter .
    They gave it a go in the second half,, but yet again, we start slowly, and badly. Hindsight may suggest Wenger was wrong not to start with Alexis….also thought it was strange taking Danny off, unless he was worried about injury.
    Our record against the better teams is now little short of well….pathetic really, especially away.
    Why have we become so poor..worryingly, on evidence of recent games,not sure Wenger has the answers at the moment, but we shall see.
    I can see why he doesn’t, and he may not know himself, but if I had a vote, it would be for Wenger to reveal his hand, they look to me like they are clearly unsettled, not sure anything Wenger may reveal could make things much worse, and it may make things better. He needs to pick things up, and quickly…..the board might want him, the players might, and so may many fans, but it will do Wenger no favours in the long run to stay unless this seasons performance, and future optimism warrants it.
    As for the referee, the Can episode is yet another example of how our refs make it up as they go along….Arsenal seem to see a lot of that. We did not lose because of the referee, but that was poor. Seels like Xhaka is judged by different rules than some.

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  20. Seriously though, the players must know it is going to happen week in and week out. Just how difficult must it be to motivate players when they know they will be screwed by those northern crooked monkeys every single fucking week. I know I’d struggle. Wenger has an almost impossible job. I’m done with football.

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  21. North Bank Nadim‏ @NorthBankNadim 19m19 minutes ago

    Arsenal didn’t turn up for the first half, so we cant blame the officials for missing the second.

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  22. of all the top league in europe, the BPL must have the worst standard of officials of any. Today alone I have seen in just 3 games that I seen some of, Mings get away with a red, Zlatan get away with a red and a couple of yellows, a penalty given to the team that handled the ball, Can get away with a clear second yellow, Xhaka booked for complaining about Can not being sent off and an offside goal.

    All season long we have seen game after game decided by reffing mistakes, rules not implemented, rules made up, and an FA that fails to take retrospective action on cheating, diving, and thuggish play.
    But what can we expect from the FA or BPL when Scuddamore comes out in the media and says the BPL need a certain team to do well.

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  23. Wenger: “We hadn’t played for a while so it took us a while to get into the game. We conceded cheap goals. You don’t expect that.”

    well sorry to say this, but is this not the problem, after all the cheap goals we concede(especially in the big games) and Wenger still does not expect it to happen again. He is just far too optimistic.

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  24. afcstuff‏ @afcstuff

    Wenger on possibly missing out on top 4: “There’s a possibility to be in it as well so let’s focus on that.”

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Other than the offside Xhaka could have committed the foul to stop the attack of he didn’t get that phantom yellow earlier. Decisions like this make a difference as I feel we at least could have got a draw.
    No excuses for the first half though.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Arsenal’s last 11 BPL games have seen us

    W5 D1 L5, F19 A16
    16pts from possible 33pts

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  27. only 8 clean sheets in 26 BPL games is a real worry, and only 1 clean sheet in the 8 games so far v the top 7

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  28. Can’t wait for our fluid attacking play to return. These players are good. They just don’t seem to be mentally focussed at the moment.

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  29. Seems a while since we have played well for the majority of a match….perhaps the game at Soton in the cup, but that was not the first choice 11. West Ham….maybe but they made that easy.
    I think you have to go back to the Autumn….then, we had Cazorla,,and there was a general optimism Wenger signing was going to be pretty certain.
    Can think of a couple of things that have changed there. However, as brilliant as Cazorla is, surely there has been time to find alternative solutions, especially with his recent injury record. I just cannot get past Wengers future usettling the squad.
    I will not try and predict the future, but get the impression, whatever happens,,we are in for an….interesting….few months

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  30. we had 12 days to prepare for today’s game, and the team looked totally unprepared in that first half. why, I don’t know, but our record in away games v the top sides in recent years is pathetic, so many games we have conceded 3 or more goals.

    We can all agree that Cazorla is a great player, but surely by now – cazorla missed 25 league games last season and has missed 19 so far this season – Wenger should have come up with a solution, be that formation or tactically, by now, that is if not having Cazorla is the problem. I can see we miss him, we miss his link play, his ability to play out from the back, but for example today, which of, if any, of the 3 LFC goals would he have prevented.
    Bellerin has since his injury pre-christmas not been anywhere near his best, and Monreal has gone from being one of the very best left backs in england last season, to being poor this season.
    Mustafi and Kos were both good again today, and for the most part have been good this season, but Coquelin has also not been at last season’s level, now this might be part down to him missing Cazorla, but it can only be part down, it is still up to Coq to make and win tackles, to make his own passes, make the interceptions. He has for me this season, looked like the lad we sent out on loan for several seasons, and not the warrior we seen when he came back from Charlton and for much of last season.

    I am worried that Iwobi is getting too much game time, his form has been very up and down, and of late he looks off the pace, but for some reason he is not being rested. I hope he has the confidence to come through this a better player. But as long as the team is struggling, I fear it could affect him and his development.

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  31. Maybe he has privately informed the players that he won’t be signing an extension. Or maybe the board is not offering him one.

    The twin defeats to MCity and Everton seem to be the start of this poor run of play.

    I know Wenger says it is hard to recover from 2 successive losses but 5 months is crazy.

    It’s probably some backroom stuff.

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  32. I was hoping the Ox would really kick on this season but he’s defensive work rate is really lacking.

    Not to mention his further kicks.

    BTW why was Özil not playing today? Injured? I thought having Welbeck and Giroud up top would be fine with Özil providing the service.

    The pundits were all going on about Arsene’s plan backfiring because he left his best player on the bench. I think the players didn’t follow the game plan at all.

    I can’t understand why when heading a ball why they can’t find a team mate. 90% of them went to the opposition.

    Santi is a fantastic player who is definitely missed but I can’t put the lack to defensive effort due to him not being in the team.

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  33. Come on Arsenal. Put your heads down and with hard. The rest will come.

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  34. FFS, yes Santi is a miss, but we cant find the answer when the answers are also injured.

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  35. Interesting Chkmiaot.
    Wenger himself could be unsettled as well….he is a human being, under immense pressure, undergoing a difficult patch of form
    Many think they know Wenger has been offered a contract, and either will, or won’t sign but it will be completely up to him. The only truth, none of these people know anything on what’s going on with Wengers contract. As implausible as it may seem,it is possible there is no contract, who knows. But that might explain a few things.
    But like it or not, they are going to,have to start getting results against rival teams to achieve anything that even resembles success this season.

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  36. injured, or at Bournemouth, but very valid point

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  37. george we had our back five and coq available for almost the entire season, and yet it could be argued that it is the defensive side of the team that has been the big let down for us this season. we still pretty much score every game, 2 BPL games we have failed to score, the last one was Middlesboro in October, and we have only failed to score in 1 cup game, the league cup game v Southampton in November. So on the face of it the attack is still working to a much greater degree than our defensive side of the game. Of course its up to everyone to help the defense, but its been Iwobi or Alexis wide left, and Theo has been getting great praise this season for his improvement on his defensive work, so what is the reason we are so open.

    12 times we have conceded more than one goal in a game this season, and 13 times we have conceded 1 goal. 39 games, and conceded in 25 of them. 14 clean sheets.

    the BPL stats are 8 clean sheets, 2 goals or more conceded in 8 games, and 10 games we have conceded 1 goal. So we are as likely to conceded more than one goal as to keep a clean sheet, and are over twice as likely to conceded than keep a clean sheet.

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  38. Oh ffs, I’m sick of this shit. Its a team game the MF has been the problem. no control and no fit players to make it possible. Go on then .who the fuck do you want to blame? Who needs lynching. Find me a scapegoat. I need to vent my frustration like every other sad prick.

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  39. Mandy we know Wenger has been offered a contract, he has stated a few times that he will make a decision on it in March of April. He can’t make a decision on it, if no contract offer.
    We don’t know the length of contract offered, pre-Christmas the word was that it was a one year rolling contract. but, probably due to piers morgan stating that AW had been offered a 2 year deal, that now is the one the media keep reporting now. Only AW and the Board know the truth of it.

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  40. george yes its a team game, and that is why I think that almost all the players are to blame, not any one individual, even if many of them are not playing anywhere near their best for large chunks of this season.

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  41. So they’re all to blame

    So we lynch every last one of the useless wankers

    And the manager

    I’ve got it – commendably comprehensive solution

    Liked by 2 people

  42. That’s certainly what’s been said Ed, on balance, probably as it is, but still think there is a hell of a lot of nerves and unsettled stuff going on.
    Does he suggest announcing it publically March or April?…..March now…
    Agree, MF is a serious problem, but there seem to be so many other problems….inability to take a corner or free kick amongst them. And a strange selection, I am sure he had his reasons, but with hindsight, a wrong selection
    Really hope he can put things right, and quickly, whatever his decision may be, as we can be sure he is trying his best to do.

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  43. I still blame Gus Caesar

    Liked by 2 people

  44. anicoll who is talking about a lynching, but should we act like an ostrich and bury our heads in the sand and ignore that we are twice as likely to concede than to keep a clean sheet. and in over 2/3 of our games scoring one goal has not been enough to win the game. Our squad is full of talented players, nearly all our first team squad are full internationals, and we have a top manager, and yet we are seeing what Wenger refers to as “soft goals” conceded way too often. the worrying thing is that he seems at a loss as to how to fix it. Ozil should be back for the Bayern game, and Elneny could be back for our next league game, so barring any more injuries, that would leave us with only one player missing (Cazorla), we can but hope that with all but santi fit, we can sort out the problems that have blighted us for much of this season

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  45. Mandy I’m sure that once we get into April, if nothing made public on a decision, the media will bring it up at every presser. But it must be remembered that by end of April we may only have 3 league games to play(although we currently have 2 BPL games to fit in, and if we beat lincoln next week we will have a 3rd to rearrange), and possibly an FA Cup final.

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  46. Boss – Why Alexis was on the bench

    Arsène Wenger included Alexis among the substitutes at Anfield on Saturday, bringing our Chilean forward on at half-time with the side 2-0 down.

    The boss’ decision prompted questions in his post-match press conference and he explained his tactical plan to reporters:

    on the thinking behind benching Alexis…
    The thinking was that we had to go more direct and I wanted to play two players who are strong in the air, because we decided to go more direct. After that, to bring on Alexis in the second half. Of course, I believe in the second half it was easier for the strikers and you could see a different performance from Giroud and Welbeck because we dominated much more of the midfield. Everybody will come to the same conclusion, but I’m strong enough and lucid enough to analyse the impact. And I don’t deny that Alexis is a great player. I bought him and I always played him. This decision was not easy to make, but I have to stand up for it.

    on Alexis being frustrated on the bench…
    I don’t think there’s any need to go into any individual explanation. What was good in the second half was our collective performance. What was not good in the first half was our collective performance. For me, that’s a much more rational explanation than the rest.

    on how Alexis took the news of being dropped…
    You focus on what you want. For every single player, it’s the same. Everybody tells you that you need to buy strikers and then when you have them, everybody asks why you don’t play all of them. It’s impossible.

    on our approach…
    We did go direct in the first half. What I call direct is that the goalkeeper kicks straight to his strikers. That’s what we did.

    on not creating chances in the first half…
    We didn’t create many chances. We had some dangerous situations and we didn’t make enough of our corners. We had good situations on corners where we didn’t do very well on the delivery. With the players we had on the pitch, we should have made more of these opportunities because Liverpool are vulnerable from corners.

    on the display…
    I felt in the first half we suffered from a lack of rhythm and competition, which I thought would happen. But it was a game of two halves. In the second half we responded very well and could have come back to 2-2. I felt we were a bit unlucky and a bit unlucky with some decisions as well. So overall, that’s what the game was today.

    on whether Emre Can should have been sent off…
    You watch the situation and you give me your opinion. Or you ask the referee – that’s even better. You go directly to see him.

    on whether he has been to see the referee…
    No.

    on whether he would like an explanation from the referee…
    No, no, no. I don’t need explanations. The situations are the situations. Explanations will not change anything in the situation.

    on the regrets he has from the game…
    I just think that I have no special regrets. My regret is to have lost the game and especially in the first half, for the first goal we conceded from a direct kick from their goalkeeper. The fact that we lacked pace in our first half was down to, in my opinion, the fact that we had a lack of competition.

    Copyright 2017 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/20170304/boss-why-alexis-was-on-the-bench#OKmMiRW85xGgyGhB.99

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  47. ‘We should have been organised enough’
    Petr Cech had no chance with Liverpool’s goals at Anfield and his big regret is that we conceded the chances in the first place.

    Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane struck in the first half to leave us with too much to do in the second half, and Petr was disappointed with our collective performance:

    on whether Arsenal needed to be more aggressive in the first half…
    We had two weeks to prepare for the game. We knew they were fast on the counter-attack and that they like to press a lot, so we didn’t want to give them a chance to counter-attack. In the end it’s very disappointing. The two goals we conceded in the first half were when we were in position, behind the ball and not in immediate danger. They always managed to find the opening unfortunately, and that shouldn’t have happened because we should have been organised enough to prevent it. We were not at the level we should have been at in the first half, and it’s difficult to say why. Alexis came on in the second half and we played much better.

    on how the team were affected by changes…
    We have a squad of 25 quality players, so we know that whoever comes in has the quality to perform. We were missing players and you obviously want to have all your players, but our squad is strong enough to cope.

    on trying a different game plan in the first half…
    Believe it or not, it was the same game plan in the first and second half, we just executed it better after the break. We were more aggressive in the second half, played with more purpose and we started winning the 50:50 battles. That was the biggest difference between the two halves. It’s disappointing when you lose a game, but it’s more disappointing when you look at the two goals you conceded and you were not in danger. We had enough players behind the ball but we left the player free and they found the opening. If they outplay you in the situation and you can’t do anything about it, then fine, but we were very organised and we conceded which shouldn’t happen. We paid the price for that in the second half because we came back, scored the goal we needed, but unfortunately couldn’t equalise.

    on Alexis…
    We had a game plan and we had the players to execute the game plan. We didn’t have a game last week so we had time to prepare. Unfortunately in the first 45 minutes, we didn’t match their intensity. When you lose the 50:50 duels, you make it harder for yourselves.

    on the race for the top four…
    With the three points we would have still been in the chase for the title, but now I think we are too far away. I don’t think Chelsea will lose so many points, so now we need to concentrate on finishing as high as possible and qualifying for the Champions League.
    Copyright 2017 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/20170304/-we-should-have-been-organised-enough-#jlZmDJ3pPgPzliHd.99

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  48. I’m baffled eddy – I thought the big problem was conceding goals in quick succession.

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