Arsenal vs WBA – Fingers Crossed.

A guest post from @Labo_Goon
Good day Positivistas!
We all know how pundits just love their top 6 mini-league tables,
because for them this is where Premier League titles are won
and where the divide between Champions League qualification and Europa
They have a point you know, but……
The other side of the coin is that many games vs teams in the
“also-run” category aren’t exactly cakewalks. How many times in the
past did teams fall a mere few points shorts from being crown PL Kings
or even making CL qualification because of slip-ups against the also-rans ?
This is what make these games so vital. If you drop too many
unnessacary points here, it’s irrelevent how well you did in the top 6
mini-league come May. Something we as Gooners know all too well.
Against the top 6 teams you know exactly what to expect, they have a
certain style, some cracking players that will punish you if you lose
focus for even a second. But this… this damn also-runs are the
banana skins man. Complacency can set in, Ben Foster can turn up like
a man auditioning for a ‘top 6 call-up’, and one or two of their
attacking players can get bloody slippery as hell. Don’t even dare
give them a set-piece anywhere close to goal, training ground stuff
can suddenly just fall in place.
Don’t forget the refs man. How many times did they become the subject of
discussion – for sucker punching us to create distance between
ourselves and sweetheart clubs at the top of log? A legitimate goal
being disallowed, a few of the most straightforward penalties not given,
a player getting stopped via chokehold being waved on, penalties given
against us from only god knows where? Match officials love stealing
the show!
Now today! With the expectation that WBA will play from deep, Arsenal
need to be on their A game and not too adventurous, the opposition
will be very patient as their primary aim will be not to lose. If we
over commit too much, a misplaced pass could lead to… … Let me
just say, whatever scenario, Arsenal twitter refers to it as: “typical
Arsenal”. So that is not needed tonight.
After an initial poor start to our season we seem to have pulled
ourselves up and are WWDW in our last 4 games. Most pleasing for me
about this is that we kept 3 clean sheets, conceding a solitary fluke
goal. So more of that defensive discipline wouldn’t be asking too
On our opponents: Just last Wednesday they pushed a strong Man City
team to their limits. In Evans and McAuley they got one of the better
CB pairings of teams in the mid to bottom half, so chances will be
few, and we need to bury one as soon as it comes. Allowing them to
become too comfortable as the game moves along, could be very
frustrating for us.
Tony Pulis has been a long time admirer of Arsène Wenger and in the
very articulate Kieran Gibbs he found himself a gateway to the Arsenal
way. So no doubt our ex player has become the de facto technical
adviser leading up to the game all week. That should tell us they know
our weaknesses and our strengths, to the man.
If we play with the same discipline and care we did Bournemouth and
Chelsea, there’s no reason why we wouldn’t have joy at the end
On team selection: I think we’ve reached the point where we can refer
to a predicted line-up as “the usual suspects”, with them one can
expect the distinguished Mesut Özil back after missing out last
Sunday, as well as Alexis Sánchez the obvious replacement for Danny
Saed Kolašinac is a player that excites me, very compact and
disciplined, so it will be interesting to see the chemistry building
up between him and Alexis on the left side of the pitch. This is a
fixture for the Chilean to get back to his best, so stay in the
attacking half of the field and trust your team mates, there’s no need
to play fetch. If he can try more of those passes he gave Theo vs the
Donny’s, he’ll become a treat to even those he frustrates so much.
Ramsey and Xhaka were the ones pulling the strings last 2 PL fixtures.
If they win the midfield battle, it will make the job of the rest so
much easier.
As the boss always say, our most important game is the next one. This
is that game! And my buzz phrase is: play as individuals and we’ll be
left biting our nails, play as a team and we are in for a treat.
We are favourites to win this game but we also shouldn’t take anything
for granted, fans and players alike. Let’s keep the faith and trust
Arsenal to colour Monday RED.
Good luck to all watching the game from wherever and don’t forget
keeping them fingers crossed. Our boys need all the help they can get
and Arsenal supporters… know your role, we got one job!

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72 comments on “Arsenal vs WBA – Fingers Crossed.

  1. Total dominance by Arsenal in the 2nd half. Should have scored more than one. Gooners on my TL moaning & whinging that WBA had a few chances in the 1st half. Simply don’t understand AFC came to win and not sit on 1 goal lead.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. so are we expecting to see the seven subs from tonight start on Thursday, Ospina, Mertesacker, Maitland-Niles, Wilshere, Walcott, Ozil and Giroud

    we play Bate at 6pm on Thursday

    and we play Brighton at 12pm on Sunday


  3. Totally dominant second half and deserved winners
    Monreal man of the match as already mentioned what a player seems to get better with age.
    Pulls will rant at the penalty but the player once his feet should have scored and he didn’t so tough luck
    Loved Elneny again a brilliant performance
    All in all the second half was exactly what we needed in the end could have been four or five
    Well done lads

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Points in last 100 PL games:

    Arsenal 198
    Spurs 197
    Chelsea 197
    Man City 193
    Man Utd 184
    Liverpool 180

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Nice piece Labo, thanks.

    As always teams only get a sniff of our goal if we make a mistake. A bit of sloppy play and they could have punished us.

    Kolasinać is the beast I thought he would be. An excellent player. Would anybody venture to suggest his worth in today’s crazy football world?

    Sanchez was Sanchez. 50:50 man. Sublime and then fucking frustrating because he won’t play the simple pass.

    There was not enough Wengerball for me tonight. But a win is a win.

    I’m with Shotta, boy do I miss Santi Cazorla!

    Liked by 3 people

  6. JB™‏ @gunnerpunner 1m1 minute ago

    West Brom committed 17 fouls. That’s a foul every 5 minutes. Clearly tactical. Stop crying.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Jeorge Bird‏ @jeorgebird

    Arsenal U23 v Everton:
    T. Bola

    Subs: Virginia, Benson, Balogun, Olayinka, Omole

    Debuts for Medley and Gilmour.

    Benson and Balogun also made their debuts, coming on as subs

    Akpom, Nelson, Nketiah, Willock, Macey, DaSilva not involved which suggests that they could be in contention for involvement v BATE.


  8. Gerogaki: Welcome to the fan club. A membership package is on its way from a vendor I don’t know and to an address that is just as mysterious. Lol.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Nacho Monreal, #1 defender in the PL this season. What a footballer!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. but shotta the ASB say Wenger is playing him out of position at CB, as he is a “Left back”, sorry, “an average left back”

    Liked by 2 people

  11. media not liking that Crisis Club Arsenal won tonight.


  12. Classy from AW… well deserved for Barry

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Good win, clean sheet, momentum. And what of Nacho Unreal!
    There were a few empty seats, but not the emptiness predicted by the malcontents. And I thought the fans really got behind the team.
    West Brom had their moments, Rodriguez was a handful, but we took control in the second half. The usual suspects, including the usual forums are bemoaning their bad luck over the pen they didn’t get, and yes, it did look like a penalty, but so did the pull on Alexis from where I was sitting.
    West Brom played some good stuff in a spell in the first, but they also used rotational fouling, and had a nasty and dangerous tactic of leaving legs and feet in, they were very lucky to finish with all players on the pitch, penalty or not, no sympathy from this observer.

    Liked by 5 people

  14. isn’t it odd that our 3 good penalty calls in first half are overlooked, and the one we did get has doubt cast upon it for no good reason

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Great result, I wonder if the attempt to tighten up defensively is slightly inhibiting our forward play? It’s like the team haven’t clicked yet, so we’re not quite getting the champagne football we are renowned for. But right now it’s results that matter.

    I was glad to see Gibbs getting such a respectful reception from the crowd tonight.

    Liked by 4 people

  16. Aaron Ramsey has covered the most distance in Arsenal’s last two PL games – 12.34km vs. Chelsea & 12km vs. West Brom.


  17. Arsenal. Did what they had to do, businesslike and comfortable an out it.
    Good 11 man showing, as stated above, Nacho was exceptional.
    I thought our 3 midfielders were very good, all of whom were trying out a newish role.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Happy days. Attention given to their pen claim versus our two/three is utterly absurd. Can laugh long at it when we win at least!

    That crappy 3-2 defeat at Old Trafford year before last- Rashford moves arm to deny goal on line while game in balance…clear pen..one replay 20 mins after incident, dismissed; tonight, instant, 5 times right away, dozen+ more after. No good explanation for difference

    Can denies almost certain pen with arm while game in balance on weekend. Mentioned, but no heat in it whatsoever.

    Stoke, this year!

    Stoke when we lost to pen from geezer heading it at Kos’ arm form two yards!

    Stoke when, next time there. or same game, one of ours headed it against their defender Muniesa from few yards further out; no pen.

    Stoke two years ago when we had two or three strong claims in 0-0

    That’s just the fecking Stokes

    Dozens of games last five years where we’ve had great pen shouts denied

    Anyway, fuck em; when we win, it’s fine.

    Good game and good win. Positives aplenty.

    Nacho…what can you say! Guys here bigging him up last week entitled to feel a bit smug. Majestic.

    Liked lots of others, including Ramsey, Kolasinac, Xhaka and, mostly, Sanchez. Various claims each, bar Kolasinac, below par… saw loads of class football from all of them


  19. Jonny‏ @JonnyOneill

    Big @_nachomonreal best player on the pitch. Man of the people. King of north London and the man your wife wishes she married. Respect him.


  20. New post up


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