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Arsenal: Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! rage! blow!

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@LaboGoon cocks an early snook at the snow

Good morning one and all.

Barely recovered from Sunday’s loss to Man City and it’s subsequent hysterics (which does have a life of it’s own) and here we go again……. hosting them at the Emirates. Hopefully our players are better at shaking things off than we are because tonight’s game is a big one.

Finishing outside top 4 last season was described as an anomaly, but should it happen again we can expect the suits not to be too chuffed as we are seen as better than that. Rightfully so.

10 points off CL qualification means each game going forward falls in that ‘must win’ category, because that is key if we want to prevent the points gap developing into an unassailable chasm. So with little room for slip-ups it is now time to throw caution to the wind.

This of course is easier said than done as Pep’s boys are beaming with confidence. In de Bruyne, Agüero, Sanè and Sterling they have four players who has been a real pain in the neck for all comers this season. So defensively we need better awareness and organisation, each minute of the game, we also need to be more clinical in our finishing than in recent times, when presented the chances to score.

There’s no denying that Mancity is by far the most dominant PL team, and sometimes in these circumstances the rest need to have a look at themselves to try other ways than the norm to negate their threat. We have seen the odd game this season when the Oilers didn’t particularly liked it when being pressed. And we have attacking players who, when able to overcome their mood swings and inconsistencies, can be as good and devastating as the best when things click. For me that provide the hope that we can beat these lubed-up chumps tonight.

We have Monreal out, which will be a big miss, however we have Mkhi back and I don’t doubt him and the rest will be determined to respond to Sunday’s disappointment.

A bit of history is on our side as Mancity hasn’t won a game at the Emirates in over 5 years – the 13th of January 2013 was a long time ago – so fingers crossed the Ems faithful help the boys keep that going a bit longer.

Can Arsenal do it on a frosty Thursday night in North London…

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About anicoll5

Arsenal supporter, 60, Dad, harmless and humourless, political militant moderate, school governor and worker bee

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74 comments on “Arsenal: Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! rage! blow!

  1. yes alabama, Ramsey was our best player, but if you were listening to Martin Keown on BBC Radio 5 commentary, you would be led to believe that Ramsey had abandoned midfield and was in fact not a real midfielder at all.
    Keown only let up on Ramsey when he was slagging off Ozil

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  2. Thank you Jeri Moses. I was beginning to think I was alone in seeing it that way.

    I can understand the disappointment of the season and the manager’s role being questioned, but I don’t like people using everything to point to that. I really think we played well today without being great. We’re lacking some quality, some confidence, some luck, and sure, some coaching. But the fact is that City is a team assembled over many years by the billions of dollars from Abu Dhabi, and they are a great team.

    Also, as fans all we can really affect is confidence, and maybe some ‘luck’ by pressuring the refs. The rest we can argue over incessantly but it’s not going to make a difference.

    I have no real complaints about Arsenal today. We lost to a better team and never surrendered despite the scoreline. Hopefully they can take some positives from that for our next game and play better and get a win there.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. Pep on Wenger

    He knows my admiration of him. We fight and play many times at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and here in the Premier League. I know all the managers can be in that situation. I’m sure he is going to take the right decision for him, for the players, for the club.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. They were worst possible opponent for us at this moment. Again, I think our chance of victory depended almost entirely on getting first goal.

    It shouldn’t to that degree if team is where we want to see it, but we all know we’re having tough year.

    City’s quality on the three goals was unfortunately tremendous.

    I’m still surprised, though I shouldn’t be, at all the bastards with their resign now, or sack him now bollocks. Ludicrous.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Pep on the penalty save

    If Ederson had not saved the penalty the game would have been completely open

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  6. I guess that was always a possibility. They are top quality players playing with confidence hence every shot on target was accurate and out of reach of our keeper. On the other hand we’re playing bereft of confidence, unable to really threaten their goal and snatching at the few scraps that come our way. Even that penalty attempt was half-hearted and lacking confidence. Good points are that we stuck to our task in the second half and stopped them adding to the score.

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  7. When its not going your way it just doesn’t. This will pass. A lot of character shown. Its what sport is all about and at times its cruel.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Wenger to SKY

    Well there is not a lot to talk about. I think it was a game against a team with top quality and lots of confidence.

    I knew before the game the first half would be difficult for us after last Sunday. They took advantage of our lack of confidence and I must say our team put in a huge effort.

    We’re going through a difficult period.

    On City’s goals

    Yes of course (the goals were preventable). You always hear that after the game.

    I don’t want to take anything away from them but it was soft defending on our side. We needed of course the penalty for a slight chance to come back. It’s tough but that’s explainable after what happened on Sunday and the consequences of the hype about our performance. It hits you.

    I think the players put in a huge effort today but unfortunately we had some soft defending.

    Wenger on the fans

    Look, we focus on the performances and when the pressure is on like, usually strong organisations unite. You have to stay together and focus more than ever. You think you want people to be euphoric when you are 3-0 down? Certainly not.

    Can you turn it round?

    Yes of course (I have confidence in myself). The confidence comes from the fact I have done it before.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I get the confidence thing, it is a clear problem, and has been, on and off for some time, but can’t they just drill the defensive side of the game to bring about a solid base on which to build some confidence? The coaching staff seem very reluctant to do that.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Wenger’s after game presser – from football.london

    On the defeat

    I felt it was a game of top intensity.

    We produced physically our highest performance of the season by quite far. Physically the two teams gave a lot.

    I knew the first half would be difficult for us. They took advantage of every defensive weakness in the first half.

    We lost against a top quality team, the best in the country. The fact they are high in confidence and we are low played a big part tonight.

    Wenger on struggling to get confidence back

    You go up by stairs but come down by the lift.

    Wenger on recent results

    We go through a difficult patch, that’s football.

    Toughest time?

    I don’t know, I don’t compare to any other situation I face before. I commit completely and stay committed and focus on the next game.

    On the low crowd

    It was a combination of the weather conditions and the fact we had a difficult result on Sunday.

    On Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan

    They need time to adapt. Every game you lose now you are under pressure. They are players who just joined us, I am sure they will do well.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Well that was a cold night,breezy also and the snow .
    No need for weather reports or maybe I should stick to the weather

    Well the forcast (After tonights performance) is gloomy , with few shoots of spring.
    The Head gardener has made a mid season roatation, with a short to medium term view. As yet with inclement climate conditions we have yet to see early production in this quater but there is optimisim amongst the team that with careful planning the long term will see an upturn in yield.

    On the other hand what do I know , I am cold , City are a level above Leroy Sane is going to be a ‘World Star’.

    I got myself some Fish and Chips and I am going to eat them whilst watching a French series with French subtitles because my French is so bad I have to concentrate and not think about Arsenal for the rest of the night.
    Salut!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I thought our positioning was much better today, both in defense and in pressing to win back the ball. We put in some strong tackles in midfield, but Sane in particular seemed to always be able to get past our players in our defensive third.Maybe we were more focused on Aguero and De Bruyne (just a guess)

    In general though, our defending does leave a lot to be desired. And is one of the weaknesses of Xhaka’s game. He’s weird. He’s not slow really, but when it comes to being defensively aware he’s like molasses sometimes. Don’t mean to call him a bad player because he’s not, and I still have high hopes for him. Maybe he does need more defensive drills rather than the loose structure that Wenger provides. The thing is, there’s nothing inherently wrong with Wenger’s methods. Some players thrive under it, others wilt. On current evidence, many are wilting.

    Like Wenger though, I still feel like we can turn this around. Maybe not good enough to get top 4, and winning the Europa is going to be tough. But get some form going, maybe progress in the EL and Arsenal can then approach next season with a clearer idea of how to go about retooling.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. “You go up by stairs but come down by the lift.”

    I love how Wenger comes up with these phrases.

    Pity we have to go up the stairs while a lot of our own fans are pulling us down.

    Liked by 4 people

  14. Agree, but others find ways to stop these losses of confidence, as we once did. Ok said others get nothing but praise from the media, some very favourable decisions (except when they play each other) which must help.
    Fans, media, some of the decisions we get don’t help I know, but we are thirty points behind the leaders and well off the top four, there must be a way to improve this situation with such a talented group of players, and talented manager despite the changes taking place from within?

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  15. why not play a back 3 again for sometime till the confidencr is bsck.
    Bring the old guard back.Per Mertersacker .Anyone?

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  16. A back 3 of Mustafi Per and Kos with Chec in goal should be experienced enough to stop any opposition. Imo.

    But what do i know?

    i Am sure Wenger knows better.

    coyg…

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  17. I do wonder when I see some of these teams running around, with seemingly unlimited energy, a bit like Barca did. That amount of pressing over a season over multi competitions is not easy.
    I don’t know the running stats, we certainly put in a shift, but they were everywhere , a bit like certain other teams in the top six. Are we missing a trick on fitness training, or abiding by the laws?

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  18. Should be Rosicky, but they are lacking in confidence, so is their MF shield at times, the defenders can get exposed and lack protection. Not blaming individuals, this is a team or formation thing, and has been going on for some time, a real departure from Wenger teams past.

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  19. “You go up by stairs but come down by the lift” My word, I’m going to miss that man when he’s gone. I hope I have the privilege of listening to him speak for some other club/organization after he leaves us.

    Liked by 4 people

  20. Some Arsenal fans have been spoiled by 20 years of relative success. The first time the club is facing a sustained dip below those (recent) standards and the lily-livered are losing their shit. When your players are struggling, shouldn’t you redouble your efforts to support them? Over reacting to set backs and booing when they have tried hard seems counterintuitive to me. I’m clearly out of step with the modern version of ‘support’. I thought that with competitive sport sometimes the other team is better and therefore sometimes you lose? Perhaps I’ve always got it wrong and when we lose it’s totally down to incompetence and never the quality of the opponent? What on earth would they do if they had the misfortune to support a team of real strugglers who very rarely win games?

    Liked by 3 people

  21. of course passenal the caliber of the victor should be taken into account, that can explain losing to city, but what of the other 11 teams we have lost to this season

    we have seen so little wengerball this season, and that is one of my main concerns with the team, even in the trophyless seasons we produced wonderful football on a regular basis, but most of what we have seen this season has been average or even boring. Midfield and Attack not clicking, and then when you add in that the defending has been woeful at times, even when we have lots of players back defending, it does not a good picture make. the team has lost its identity,

    Liked by 2 people

  22. passenal

    It sucks but it’s how it is. What I find hardest to believe is that there seem to be a lot of people who believe there’s a possibility the club would sack Wenger now or that he would resign now.

    Chances of that are so small it doesn’t even seem worth mentioning to me.

    They might not like it, might seem the case it’s what would often happen at other clubs (though any comparison is near useless as we are genuinely unique, purely because of the length of the manager’s tenure but perhaps also for other reasons), but I can only think they are daft and unrealistic or, somehow worse for me, ‘playing’ at it.

    Saying ‘let’s wait and see where we are at the end of the season’ simply isn’t dramatic enough, even saying that and adding ‘but i think that’s wrong’, or similar, isn’t enough either, apparently. It doesn’t match their mood and, in short, isn’t exciting.

    We can expect it from the press, thought from ex-players with any claims to being sensible it is more annoying, and from our own ex-players even more so.

    It’s what the press do, and it allows them to use every press conference as a ‘are you the man to turn it around?’, ‘Are you leaving?’ job, whereas if they accepted it will be reviewed at season’s end and not before those questions would be off the table. So they ignore the truth of it, pretend there’s a good chance, make every press conference more gruelling and annoying for Wenger than it could be, interpret his reactions as more evidence of strain and trouble. All so artificial.

    But to see fans joining in…bleurgh.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. New post up

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  24. well Rich the Chairman and CEO are no where to be seen with even a hint of support for the manager, I don’t expect silent Stan to change a habit of a lifetime and come out with statements, but our Chairman could, and our CEO certainly should, he used to issue statements or do interviews at the drop of a hat, where is he this season, he should be hitting back at the media, at the ex players.
    That this is not happening is only fueling it more.

    I don’t expect Wenger to be sacked, but it would not surprise me if he leaves this summer, a lot depends on how this season plays out.

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