Arsenal: A steep price for effortless progress

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Good morning Positives,

A respectable performance last night from Arsenal against limited opponents. A win and three points would have tied the qualification package perfectly but taking into account events in the 25th minute it was not ever likely to be a night I remembered for football reasons.

Danny’s injury was, let me not beat about the bush, a bloody catastrophe for the player. It came out of nothing. The fracture resulted, I think, from his landing from an attempted header on goal. It was exactly the same ‘footballing’ movement that had given him goals against Brentford recently. He probably practises jumping and heading a hundred times a week in training and has every week since he was eight years old. Yet this time he came down and he suffered a serious injury. Inexplicable.

As for the implications it looked the sort of horrible injury from which a player wipes away any plans to kick a ball for the remainder of their season. With Danny’s 28th birthday in a fortnight and with  him already in the final year of his contract I hope his recovery is as swift and as complete as possible.

Back to the football, Arsenal step on from the group stage to the knock-our round never having had to extend ourselves in any match. Guendouzi and Ramsey controlled midfield throughout last night. Rob Holding and Sokratis were thorough in what they did and made no errors. Jenks and Stephan ditto. Tidy all round. Our only weakness was in translating a lot of possession into clear, scoring chances which did not happen. As I said in opening perhaps our usual ‘appetite’, that extra =/-2% that makes the difference,  had been taken away, on a stretcher.

Nevertheless, I shall take the easy Europa qualification in four games. In part that has been the result of Emery putting out strong sides in each  game, albeit with a sprinkling of youth to be blooded. The second factor is, regrettably, because the opposition put in front of us has been mediocre quality at best. I had expectations that Sporting Club of Portugal might provide little more sparkle last night but they produced the same display that they had put on  a fortnight ago. I was wrong.  So  limited were they  this the first time ever we have ever played a team over two legs in Europe and the opposition have failed to register a single shot on target.

There will be harder battles down the road.

On with Friday everybody, and work hard.


About anicoll5

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

41 comments on “Arsenal: A steep price for effortless progress

  1. Very good Andy. If we had a problem, it was only at the top end of the pitch.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A far happier moment for Danny, and us;

    Come back Dat guy.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yep – we had plenty of blocked shots, and even more shots that flew high and wide. A lot more target practice required. Alex Iwobi I thought was the pick of our front players, snakehips.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Can only guess the bad landing was the result of a bit of contact while in the air, bit like Zouma’s knee injury a couple of years ago. Looked like defender was off balance and hurtling forward into space Danny would be landing in.

    No blame on it as was a genuine challenge, but it’s why I dislike deliberate late pushes when players are off ground heading ball.

    Truly gutted for him given all the circumstances.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Haven’t got much analysis in me for game, but thought Iwobi looked most likely to create breakthrough.

    Also, while in different type of game, with more space around, Auba can give Laca run for money, Laca definitely seems the more rounded player, and one who would have been more likely to make difference in game like last night.

    From what Emery said, seems likely we’ll go strong again next game as we want to make sure we get 1st, and that’s main reason for disappointment not to finish it yesterday, as fixture list is monstrous after the break. 12 games between Nov 25 and Jan 1st

    Vorskla away is near the start of it and Spurs game is couple of days after it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Good job under circumstances Andrew as it’s a bit tough being cheerful this morning. The look on the players’ face, especially Ramsey’s on pic Ed posted in last thread had my throat dried up a bit. One can only hope Danny is getting the best care today and over next few months.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Thanks Andy for this. As accurate and perceptive as ever. I did eventually get to see the game after all, and rather wish I hadn’t. Poor old Danny W, but time (and an operation) will give a clearer picture of what now faces him. I don’t think it will be the end of him as an Arsenal player: he still has time on his side, and given the careful way he will be looked after by our rehab team if his ankle is salvageable I can see it being mutually beneficial for him to stay with us beyond June. It is of course a regrettable but timely reminder to all agents that letting a contract run down is not without risk.
    It was one of those games when the ball never fell quite right for us in attack, but also made me remember how useful it was to have that handsome French chap around when trying to breach packed defenses. We don’t offer much of an arial threat these days, and even less of one now. Perhaps Crouch or Carroll might be available in January…….

    Liked by 4 people

  8. Mesut Özil: “In football, everything is possible but I am really happy to play for a big club like Arsenal. I just enjoy it and I can imagine finishing my career at Arsenal.”

    Liked by 1 person

  9. foreverheady do you think this new hard nosed regime who pulled an agreed contract from Ramsey will give a stricken Welbeck a new deal, for old times sake, I would say not fucking likely

    Liked by 2 people

  10. My guess it was probably 50/50 that DW would be offered a new contract Tim even if he as 100% fit. I expect that the club will have a better idea in a few months if Danny will ever be fit to kick a football again, by May/June say, as well as the player himself have his ideas straight. It will probably be clearer then.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Think Ramsey looked forward to spending his entire career at Arsenal until he was sacrificed on the altar of Mesut Ozil. (Yes, I’m bitter, so sue me)

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Terrible news about Danny obviously for the player, the nice guy but also the amount he added to the team.
    Coming away without the win was also a bit of a shit considering the next game and the fixtures around it.
    I actually thought collectively it was our worst performance under Unai and even a small improvement in the sid e would have seen us guaranteed top.
    Our passing generally was poor (obviously not counting that exquisite pass by Matteo, but even when not at his best he seems to pull one of those out the bag)
    Our crossing was awful and a little late, we played at a slow pace for large parts of the game and there was just nothing clinical about any of out many attempts.
    However the worst thing about our performance was the decision making at key times, when for some reason we seemed to be trying to hard, even trying the Hollywood at times.
    So all things considered although disappointed we can’t moan about the performance but yes the injuries (yes I know I just have but I know you will keep it quite).
    We weren’t far off the pace yesterday so On to Sunday.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Ramsey has won the BPL goal of the Month, for his goal v Fulham

    Liked by 4 people

  14. It’s an awful blow for Danny, one of my favorite Arsenal players in recent years. His match winners against Manchester United in the Cup and Leicester in the League will live long in my memory.

    There are no positives to be extracted from this development. The only thing to say is that it’s somewhat heartening that supporters have made progress in their understanding of injuries and their impact. Not long ago many just looked to the medical prognosis as if fixing a player’s injury was the same as fixing a machine. Now I sense a broader appreciation of the psychological effects on injuries on players.

    That’s where the true challenge of recovery lies, and I hope Danny again shows himself capable of overcoming it.

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Arsenal FC
    ‏Verified account @Arsenal
    2h2 hours ago

    🏆 @Aubameyang7 is the first Arsenal player to win the @PremierLeague Player of the Month award since Olivier Giroud in March 2015

    Congrats, Auba 👏

    Liked by 1 person

  16. afcstuff
    ‏ @afcstuff
    1h1 hour ago

    Arsenal’s most recent PL Player of the Month winners:

    October 2018: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
    March 2015: Olivier Giroud
    September 2013: Aaron Ramsey
    October 2011: Robin Van Persie
    December 2010: Samir Nasri
    October 2009: Robin Van Persie

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Our medical team have issued the latest update following Thursday’s Europa League clash with Sporting CP.

    Danny Welbeck
    Significant right ankle injury. Danny remains in hospital and will continue to be assessed. A further update will be issued over the next 72 hours.

    Stephan Lichtsteiner
    Right hamstring. Being assessed ahead of Wolverhampton Wanderers (h) on Sunday, November 11.

    Nacho Monreal
    Right hamstring. Being assessed ahead of Wolverhampton Wanderers (h) on Sunday, November 11.

    Mo Elneny
    Right thigh. Expected to return to full training in one week.

    Laurent Koscielny
    Right Achilles tendon repair. Currently being integrated back into full training.

    Dinos Mavropanos
    Groin injury. Expected to return to full training in November.

    Copyright 2018 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.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Just gutted for Danny, he really has had bad luck with injuries, as has the team in general.
    The club of old would have looked after him, as they did with Diaby and others, I have no idea what the new regime will do, but I really hope Danny will play again for us with an extended deal.
    Penny for Ramsey’s thoughts

    Liked by 3 people

  19. I was hoping that Welbeck would make a contribution this season and he had played his way into the new gaffer’s favour. It was exciting for all Arsenal fans to see three forwards all in form. I guessed he was getting close to a few starts on the right, if Ramsey isn’t going to play there.
    A significant loss to the squad. Fortunately Ramsey is still here and will indirectly play a little more, the rookie Nketiah is exciting but also different in style and physique to the England forward and IMO others will be asked to make up for the loss of Danny. I wish Welbeck better luck on the road back to fitness.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. some Arsenal fans keep telling us that there is no anti Arsenal agenda in the media, but what other club has been described in one of the big media outlets(talksport) as

    “odious, obnoxious, offensive football club ”

    merely cos one of its players won BPL player of the month.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Thanks for that eddy – I love a spot of paranoid victimhood going into a football weekend

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Ramsey is a brave man if he plays to his maximum with no new deal, wealthy, but a young family, having been through what he has been through, and seen what he saw yesterday.
    Fortunately for Arsenal, he is a brave man. I don’t want him to go, but if the club do not want him for whatever reason, whether it be down to the club, player, agent or any combination, maybe they should let him go in Jan and get a nice lucrative contract this wonderful servant of the club deserves.

    Liked by 4 people

  23. Eddie Nketiah has been unlucky we have not seen more of him. Every time he is due to come on something happens and he has to put his top on again. It would be good, for lots of reasons, if we could give him a good 30 minutes on Sunday to give the young man some confidence.

    Liked by 2 people

  24. I can see why my comments about Welbeck might have seemed naive – but my thinking was a liltte more cynical. Any club that signs him from now on (albeit on a free) will have to do their sums and work out how much they are prepared to offer a forward who is coming back from a serious injury on the back of a previous serious injury. Quite a risk to commit big wages in that scenario – especially as he would presumably want to go somewhere where he was likely to be a first choice striker/ left wing. I reckon he would need at least half a season to prove he was worth taking that chance on. For Arsenal it would not have to be that big a gamble were they to offer him a year’s extension right now when he is not in the best of bargaining positions.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. foreverheady

    If injuries at worst end of scale, I’d offer Danny a year in order to spare him the horrible scenario of his contract ending before he has regained full fitness.

    The other pro’s with that are you’d hope it’s the sort of thing that gives message to rest of squad we’re a decent club who care about players. Would also be a bad pr move to leave any player, especially a popular one, in that grim situation.

    Liked by 2 people

  26. More talk now linking us to Nicholas Pepe. Watched his team last night and he didn’t have a great game.

    Think pretty much all his spectacular highlights reel this year has been him attacking on breakaways. Opposition sat with nearly everyone in own half for whole game so little or no chance to showcase those skills. Tried a lot- few wild long range strikes, overhit long pass- a 5/6 out of ten performance.

    I’m sure scouts of top clubs actually like to see targets in those sort of games. It’s part of the sport that isn’t discussed enough for me : different skillsets required for playing on counter vs trying to break down packed defences.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. It’s not yet confirmed what Danny’s injury actually is and if he’ll require surgery. Could be that he’ll hopefully be back sooner than expected.
    I’m in the give him another year if he’s still laid up at the end of the season camp, in fact I’m surprised he hasn’t been offered a deal anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Jeorge Bird
    ‏ @jeorgebird
    23h23 hours ago

    England youth callups: U21s – Nelson
    U20s – Nketiah, Willock
    U19s – Saka, Smith Rowe
    U18s – Okonkwo, Daley-Campbell, Balogun, John-Jules

    Saka in U19 squad despite still being eligible for U17s, which shows just how highly rated he is.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Ah! Looks as though Danny has a break, dislocation & ligament damage. Worst possible diagnosis & could be out for a season.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Reiss Nelson scored the winner for Hoffenheim against Augsburg today.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Arsenal Academy
    ‏ @ArsenalAcademy
    3h3 hours ago

    #AFCU18 ran out 4-0 winners over Fulham in the #U18PLCup earlier today 👏

    Spencer-Adams (2), Martin and Balogun were all on target 🔥

    Liked by 1 person

  32. Arsenal FC
    ‏Verified account @Arsenal
    28m28 minutes ago

    Another game, another goal for @ReissNelson9 🔥🔥🔥

    ⏱️ 82nd minute – Reiss comes on with the score tied at 1-1
    ⏱️ 84th minute – Reiss scores and Hoffenheim win the game 2-1

    Reiss is currently averaging a goal every 51 minutes 😰

    Liked by 2 people

  33. Looks like Zaha out against Spurs.
    Zaha up against that lot would provide the world with a true dive fest

    Liked by 3 people

  34. Jérôme Boateng on racism in football: ‘I often hear monkey sounds when I warm up. When right-wing slogans reach the heart of society, everybody should get up and take a stand. We could have done much more for Mesut.’

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Mandy its Zaha’s 26th birthday today, he must have overdone the celebrations

    Liked by 1 person

  36. Ffs, seems like almost an eternity that out rivals just keep on winning, unless they play each other.
    Know we have had our moments this season, but Spurs must be the kings of scrappy wins

    Liked by 1 person

  37. Ffs indeed. Of course Zaha was injured for today.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. That was the thing in the good old days Mandy, the opposition would always crumble at the important stage. Now though they get the lucky and often late goal. Our turn tomorrow to step up.

    Liked by 1 person

  39. Yes, it’s very annoying, and downright inconsiderate, bit as you say, hope we respond tomorrow.
    In the good old days, Invincibles day was upon us by now, but there are still three unbeaten teams mid Nov, not sure I like it at all

    Liked by 1 person

  40. New post up


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