I dare not write the review because it would be very much against the spirit of Positively Arsenal,so our friend Mills has put pen to paper for today. Thank’s Mills .

First half was a bit slow for us with Palace taking the lead, on what promised to be a warm, hopeful, sunny afternoon with the Arsenal gunning for 3rd place in the table. Even at 0-1 down it still seemed possible we could win with Leno pulling off a great double save before HT.

Second half and AMN and Iwobi came on and things seemed to go out of neutral, and up a gear or two and Mesut scored, and the collective Arsenal heart got pumping again and the noise level went up a few decibels until another mistake meant 1-2 to Palace. At this point we seemed to go into a fog and wandered around the Emirates heath with King Lear.Then this was added to by Palace which seemed to drain all hope away. Bye hope.1-3 seemed a really shocking score line at this point. Nothing like a warm, sunny afternoon and feeling really frustrated and angry!

The PEA pulled one back and hope walked in again stage left, but Mr.Moss decided otherwise with some eccentric reffing, and Palace wasted a bit of time at the end and the Arsenal couldnt grab the equaliser.

I havent gone into the details as you were there, tortured either by watching it or listening in and therefore know what went on, if not Im sure you will see it later.Plus isnt that the point of the forum to the chew the fat deposit and its dirty details? After 41 years of supporting Arsenal I still wished I could be morel level-headed, but Im stuck in my early conditioning, sure is hard sometimes to be mature.
Oh well on we go, Wolves up next. It feels kacki now, but theres a good chance we will bounce back, and maybe Chelsea will slip up too. Got to love hope, its all we have?



  1. COYG!


  2. Both goals for Arsenal were good goals in contrasting manner, the finish from Ozil deserved more then zero points.

    Another positive amidst the wreckage was the second half performance from AMN at RB, in my opinion.
    One run down the right hand side playing keepy uppy to himself whilst holding off one or two opponents took was simply incredible. He has serious potential IMO. Would prefer to see him in CM over the rookie, no slur on the rookie (and Mustafi as the back up RB in a starting four…).

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Thanks Mills

    Liked by 1 person

  4. < the finish from Ozil and his personal performance & effort deserved more then zero points…


  5. just as in the Everton game we were dire in midfield, Elneny and Guendouzi don’t look to have enough for a CM duo in the BPL, lack, pace, power, and the passing range, neither big tacklers either, I don’t know why we also started without a ball carrier in our attack,

    I may be crazy but if we had to rest Iwobi today, then we really should have bit the bullet and thrown in either Saka or Amaechi on the wing, forget this five at the back, where we are relying on wingbacks to open up opponents defenses,

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Chuba Akpom has won the league title in Greece with PAOK,
    PAOK wrapped up the Greek title tonight, 34 years after their last one

    Liked by 1 person

  7. again from discussions on twitter, a question, we are 51 competitive games into the Emery reign, and I ask do we know if he actually wants to play with real wide forwards, or is it his vision of the game that its up to the wingbacks or fullbacks to provide the width to our game. Is his use of WB’s and FB’s for the width down to us not having wide forwards who can do the role, apart from Iwobi, or is it what he prefers.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Is it good to talk or what then? Didn’t even watch it but still chewing me up despite some efforts to put it out of mind.

    Guess a little part of it was the sense that, as Palace are surely safe, our need should have been greater. I was actually wrong in that respect, as I now see it was this win that guaranteed safety, so they were presumably very switched on and well motivated.

    Think you’re totally right about Saka/Amaechi, Ed, and also must/should be very close call with Willock (although possibly he is injured, and Amaechi might be as well)

    No doubt they are extremely tough calls to make, and think fans in general are 100 times more supportive of the idea of throwing in youth to high pressure situations than the reality should a manager do so and it be anything other than a success, but still…

    Ultra reliant on full backs for width ( with one of those selected being a wild card pick at best, the other someone who thrives mostly only when team is functioning well), at the same time as knowing the service into the front three is surely not going to be the best, and an experimental back 3 (nervy newcomer, must-be-tired stalwart, mustafi)…it really didn’t look a good formula.

    Certainly feels from here as though it would be a better bet, if hand forced by injuries and fitness, to pick a team that at least in type were a better formula.

    Guendouzi aside, signs aren’t great so far about willingness to be bold with youngsters in games that matter. Quite worrying when our best chance of doing really good things in next few years relies heavily for me on a few of our highly promising youngsters making it in a big way.

    Probably the vast majority of youngsters get their first big breaks when there is an injury or two in their position. Know that was case with Hector, probably was with Ainsley to a degree also. Can’t remember if anything like that applied with Iwobi. Nketiah’s been unlucky that since Danny injury think Aubameyang and Laca have both been available virtually the whole time.

    Ah well, not too sure it was good to talk, but closer to tomorrow when I’ll be gearing up to hope again next time out.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Guendouzi has started more games in the BPL and overall than Torreira as has Mustafi over Sokratis.


  10. Ed, I’m doubtful on the wide forward question. Approved Nelson loan, didn’t give Smith-Rowe a tryout apart from Europa and League cup. Suarez barely featured (not real wide man but some of the qualities for it)

    Amaechi and Saka could barely look any more promising in youth football and, in type- speedy, skilful, dribblers, good crosses, score goals- pretty close to classic widemen.

    They’re young or very young players, but think if you were big on real wide forwards, and were very short of them with senior players, there would surely be more willingness to throw in such promising young talents into the mix.


  11. Rich yes PEA and Lacca have been available for nearly all games, but that Eddie has only been subbed on twice all season in BPL and has only a grand total of 3+3 in all competitions which means he will have to play in 4 of our remaining (max) 7 games, just to match last seasons 10 games, the lad turns 20 in May, how long till the next young striker is given the game time Eddie is currently getting, or should that be not getting. Jeez this is with Danny out injured all season, would the lad have got any game time at all if Danny had been fit.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Like said they are probably even harder calls in reality than any of us can appreciate, and think the likelihood is that Emery has most likely been sorely tempted to use a number of youngsters more in prem but when push came to shove couldn’t quite do it.

    Think it probably reflects just how big it would be for club to make CL this year, being split down the middle near enough in these crucial weeks whether prem or Europa represents best chance, and maybe Emery doing what vast majority would do in such a situation, which is ultimately favouring conservatism when faced with serious jeopardy.

    It’s hard for me to think this way, thanks to all the years with Wenger, but that jeopardy and subsequent conservatism could be down to relatively short term considerations, ie the belief his chances of making a success of it in the job (and that’s 3-4 years in normal management terms) are improved massively if he can get that CL qualification this year.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Rich I’m not sure Emery or the club see Nelson or ESR as real out and out widemen, Nelson more of a striker type, whisper it but he might be used in such a way next season that it will see Nketiah moved out. ESR was being used as an attacking midfielder, in a more central role, before he was loaned out. Might even see him used as a CAM.

    Saka and Amaechi both more real wide men, but both love to have a shot, interesting thing is that Saka was used a lot as a left back and left wing back both in the AFC U16’s and with England U17’s, again if Kolasinac is out injured or needs resting etc, would it not have been an idea to put Saka at left wingback

    Ramsey has started only 14 BPL games, been subbed on 14 times too – played in 40 of 51 games
    Ozil has started only 18 BPL games, been subbed on just the 4 times – played in 30 of 51 games

    guendouzi has played in 41 or 51 games, surprisingly Iwobi has played in 46 of the 51

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Rich of course unlike us and our theories, Emery has to deal in the reality that CL is the main target, getting it gives him leeway with his bosses, even with the fans(now), it would also mean that he would almost certainly have a much improved transfer budget this summer.
    Even Wenger in not only recent years, but in his first few years, rarely gave young players any game time outside of league cup, and european dead rubbers, he only went big on youth for the five or six years the stadium really hit us in the transfer market. Wenger always had a hierarchy of selection.


  15. Saw some youth expert on twitter claiming a few times Saka could be moulded into world class wingback, but must admit from games I saw there with Eng u17’s I didn’t fancy idea at all.

    He played well in them, had many good moments and was reasonable overall in defensive situations, but didn’t look a natural at all in defensive positioning etc, he could just make up for it mostly at that level thanks to prodigious talent.

    I’ve got a hankering at this point to see genuine widemen about as strong as that of seeing a tall dominant, beastly centre back, and that’s really saying something.

    Aside from being something I find so enjoyable to watch, maybe more so than anything else in the game, feel it would help us so much to have a player/players who can conjure something from little or nothing in that fashion.

    It also helps to give hope on off days when passing isn’t working, offers variety, and damn if it isn’t just a great thing to see when you have players with speed, great control, balance, etc. Dribblers, runners, magicians, some of that please.

    And now I suppose i should call it a night before I metamorphose into Emery out or something.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Unfortunately, don’t think today told us anything new. The first choice 11 invariably get a result, deviate from that by two or three players, problems creep in, change even more, and a recipe for disaster.
    Unfortunately, of the first choice eleven, some have season long injuries, some shorter term injuries, or suspensions. Some of those chosen today are at best , imexperienced or ring rusty, at worst, I suspect a very long way from Emerys first choice eleven, and it showed. Gwen and elneny are far too raw for a game like that, as we saw at Everton, but what was the alternative, if there were risks with starting torriera and xhaka?
    The defending was woeful, as posted earlier, I believe there were players, in a formation that the manager and team as a whole do not trust, players spreading panic, possibly affecting the flow of the team, this will kill these players confidence of the manager and team don’t rate them. For instance, Ozil seems to regard Jenks as a pariah not to be passed to on the pitch from what I have seen, and that is only for starters. Mavropanos might be talented, but lacks game time. I won’t mention others .
    The fact is, beyond the first eleven, the squad gets exponentially weaker, at least with the players emery is willing to play, perhaps there has been a case for going for the youngsters, they would have done no worse than some of those on offer today.
    Our defence has been regularly decimated since about October,those who remain are injury prone, suspension prone, or not first choices, that is a serious problem at this juncture of the season. Making Jans sole signing of DS quite perplexing really. That signing was not Emerys finest hour.
    Fortunately, Chelsea and Utd are just as capable of messi g things up as we are, so still much to play for, but whatever out away woes, if a defeat at home to palace costs a place in the ECL, that would be a pretty damning indictment.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Ed, yeah. Things you mention keep me in check, in the end, on question of playing youngsters.

    I have to presume it is my calculations- about how good various youngsters are and, especially, about how hard it is for even considerably talented young players to produce in must win games at very start of careers- are the ones that are typically at least a little off.

    Also, just a little introspection suggests something fishy in that when, for instance, Mavropanos out of picture I was always wondering if we should be playing him; and while playing I then wonder if it was really such a good idea.

    Guess it’s easy to enthuse about youth prospects when they step in and do some good things in a win, or to make case for them when not playing and we lose. Doubt I can change my ways though.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. well with defeat today we now need to win our final home game of the season to match last season’s home record of 15 wins, 2 draws and 2 defeats, winning by 8 goals to match the goal difference of +34, scoring 13 to match the 54 goals scored, we have let in 5 less so far this season

    away we are currently 6pts better off than all of last season, with 3 games to improve even more upon. we currently have scored 7 more away goals than last season, and let in 3 less too.

    overall last season we had 19 wins, 6 draws, 13 defeats 74 GF, 51 GA, +23 GD, PTS 63

    so far this season we have 20 wins, 6 draws, 8 defeats 68 GF, 43 GA, +25 GD, Pts 66

    so we can end with four wins 15pts better off than last season

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Steve Hills
    ‏ @Merse10
    3h3 hours ago

    The standard of the league outside of the top 2 the season has been poor.
    The bottom 3 have lost 71 games, Utd, Chelsea, Spurs and us have lost combined 35.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. The crux of the matter, our attacking is a generally a lot better than our defending, this has been the case for a number of years. This gives confidence to cloggers, journeymen, hoof merchants, dinosaur British style managers , players who don’t score against anyone else. At out worst, We can make Charlie Austin play, and maybe feel like Thierry, Shane Long can believe for a game he is Freddie, and as we saw today, even a player as limited as james MacArthur is allowed in on the act. Yes, I know others can do the same, Utd for starters, but I believe we have suffered more than most of this affliction.
    Until emery, or someone changes this balance to a degree, and teaches a squad of players, not just the first choicers , the basics of schoolboy defending, we are always going to suffer these kind of defeats more regularly than many we would wish to knock off their perch.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. we started with 8 defensive minded players today against Palace at home!!

    Was Emery setting up to counter Palace? I know Zaha is tricky but come on.

    Find myself asking has Mourihno been cloned or is this some mad version of face off?
    is Emery following Mourihnio Real Madrid \Man utd blurprint?

    “Ramsey has started only 14 BPL games, been subbed on 14 times too – played in 40 of 51 games
    Ozil has started only 18 BPL games, been subbed on just the 4 times – played in 30 of 51 games

    guendouzi has played in 41 or 51 games, surprisingly Iwobi has played in 46 of the 51”

    been seeing this all season, those stats are the choice of the manager due more to his preference more than circumstance.
    could the manager have given Willock some of Genduezi playing time?
    did Smith Rowe and Nelson have to go?
    could Nktieh get more play time?
    Could we have kept Carzola?
    is Emery the right man?

    full of questions today!

    Liked by 2 people

  22. Arsenal: Leno, Jenkinson, Mustafi, Koscielny, Mavropanos, Kolasinac, Elneny, Guendouzi, Ozil, Lacazette, Aubameyang

    2 very very good finishers
    1 world class playmaker
    1 promising defensive\box 2 box midfielder
    1 moderate midfielder def mid\box2box
    2 moderate wingbacks
    1 aging world class CB
    1 promising CB
    1 Mustafi.
    1 decent\promising keeper.

    asking a lot of Ozil. And as it it turns out Emery needed more defenders!!!
    Summer transfers will be interesting.


  23. Re: youth players
    Iwobi got his chance as there was a Chamberlain sized hole in the squad. Not every one agrees that a young still developing player who contributed to the fa cup victories was all that but then again these are the same kind of blagging ****s who told us all that Rambo and Ozil couldn’t play together (AFTER having seen them win the club three fa cups! The mind boggles, and some click hungry cunning linguists have no shame…and even less knowledge about the footy!).

    I hope AMN gets a chance to fill the Rambo sized hole in the squad, though I’m not confident he will get chance.

    I’m more confident that Holding will be up for filling the Koscielny sized hole in he squad, I hope he can do it and if he gets some protection as a footballer from the football refs then maybe he will…

    …it wasn’t a lack of defensive balance that saw the defender Holding taken out for the season.

    What I mean is that if you take Alderweirald out the neighbours squad they’d have won none of the trophies they have over the recent seasons or have finished even just second in the league ahead of the Gunners on the last day. They’d have none of that glory. To dare is to do and get a high pelanty count in your favour from Mike, Mike and the Mickeys. Clear handballs like the one against Palace yesterday included? Glory Glory…

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Thanks Millsy. I was at the match, thanks to my friend Baba Grumpy, and you pretty much covered the main points especially the emotional roller-coaster from start to finish. My impression is while the fans wish the best for the club this season there is a growing realization our team isn’t top-top quality offensively or defensively. Offensively our main trick is to get the ball wide and to work it inside hoping to create opportunities. As for the defending, yesterday we conceded 2 goals on st plays and another from a defender failing to deal with s long ball into the box. Chances of making top-4 are still there so we won’t piss on our team. But it is becoming obvious that post-Wenger revolution ain’t happening.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Shame you didn’t get to see a better performance/win Shotta. Hope you still enjoyed experience ,though.

    Interested to hear what you thought of man in middle from within stadium. Fair? Fair-ish? Something else?

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Following on from winning a 6-a-side tournament recently, young gunners won a tournament in Singapore this weekend. 7-a-side I think.


    Only players I know of are Omari Hutchinson, Taylor Foran and Malcolm Ebiowei. Think it may have been u-15 squad although tournament is u16.

    Interesting to see another success for group overseen by Dan Micciche. Really can’t be many coaches at that level with his pedigree.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. If Mustafi is a pile of shite as Im told by aftv etc, then every single Arsenal defender ever, and probably every Arsenal player ever is a pile of shite? Strange logic? Non!

    Truth is every player makes a mess of something sooner or later. I can list them off, or you can think of them yourselves. Theres been some big moments that went down the kasi, with big names at fault. Players are humans, not some AI bot that seems never to make a mistake. Notice in the AI of computer games they have to put flaws in the play so that somebody wins?
    The history of Arsenal ( a considered process with agenda by humans) filters the subjective idea of whose a hero or villain, we then see endless highlights to remind of ourselves of good and bad moments, but these arent the full picture.

    Humanity is at the key point of football, we hate the mistakes when they happen to us, but love it when it happens to “them”.
    Mustafi is a good player, went through a fantastic period with us, then hit the wall and seemed to lose his confidence, which is a shame as hes a great player, and still can be.That will finish his career with us no doubt, but only because of money. Yesterday I thought , well he will be kicked out now if we lose, many players are bullied out of our club when they dont need to be. If the people who think hes shite at aftv then they should go out there and play at profi level, its a million more times harder than those people think. I got to the level below and even played with a lad who went professional and that was tough enough.
    But we still need him (Mustafi) now, in this part of the season, but the mob want blood, they want to feel good, and Mustafi made them feel bad. Imagine how he feels, shamed and loathed. Must be big laughs. But the finger is pointing in the wrong direction, or at least not enough in all directions.

    But why did the team give up at 1-2 down? The third goal ( poor marking) was the killer, and we had enough chances to make it three or even four. Mustafi is not the enemy or the evil one who ruined the day. The whole team are to blame and the fans too, they are also part of it all, and the typical reaction at 1-2 was to go all quiet and introverted, when the lads needed support.

    aftv and people dont have the monopoly on opinions or on whats what, in my opinion.
    I also wish people at aftv would stop going on about the “previous regime”. If thats was a regime then they want to get out a bit more. Closer to their understanding is probably that they cant dictate how Arsenal are run. And thank the stars for that.

    Mustafi made a mistake, but so did our attacking players in missing chances and not converting, we cant have it one way and not the other? Theres no difference.

    Sometimes I wonder, having watched “Our planet” recently if we football fans could also put as much thought and energy into saving ourselves psychologically and physically then our grandkids might have a better chance?


    Liked by 1 person

  28. Rich: Frankly way up on the 9th level in the Clock End I had a great Panasonic view from south to north but a poor view of close up Action but it was obvious to see Moss err with his decisions. In our block they began singing “he doesn’t know what he is doing”, ref is a wanker, etc. But as I have stressed here and in my blog references mistakes are very obvious on tv especially in the era of hi-def and 4K. That is why it is incomprehensible that with video technology so advanced and widespread the Premier League has done everything to postpone and lately to corrupt its implementation. Point is I was too far away to make an objective judgment on those late calls by Moss.

    Liked by 2 people

  29. panoramic vs Panasonic viee


  30. Shotta

    Been years since I stepped inside a stadium so guess I’ve lost sense a bit of what it’s like there compared to at home. Different is all I remember.


  31. Mills, saw a guy I thought was reasonably sensible claim on Twitter Mustafi worst centre back in history of league, worse than Titus Bramble.

    At least it meant I could mark that guy’s card as ‘twat’, but beyond that what can you say?

    Do many really believe these things they come out with, about our own players?

    In one sense it is almost a good thing to know so many seemingly sensible people making their forceful judgements etc are not much better than the obvious idiots, and understand very little more than them, as it means there is potentially so much more of the noise that can be dismissed or ignored.

    Alas that’s probably outweighed by the fact that players and all have to live in a world with so much nonsense in it, and these things do filter down and have very real impacts on everything.

    Mustafi does not deserve this. At the worst, he is a good player with a few pronounced flaws, who may well suit playing in a team who defend deep and don’t leave big spaces to cover, rather than one where that’s not the case. To think he is anywhere near the worst defenders in prem, now let alone ever, is ridiculous.

    Terry looked completely finished when Chelsea were experimenting with a different way of playing which left him exposed and needing to cover more ground. Returned to their old way and he had an excellent season in a mean title-winning defence.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. Mustafi is a decent player, had a good game as recently as Watford. There have been a few other clean sheets lately as well. He is athletic, good in the air, doesn’t hide.
    He certainly seems to have regressed recently, though it could be argues that With Sok and Kos , he is just fine.
    But I cannot help wondering if what seems a lack of trust from his team mates , and possibly coaches has dented his confidence.
    The first goal, is someone has to be blamed, I would have to unfortunately say Jenks, a ring rusty player, who I believe also has trust issues from some of the team. The second goal, comical, but basically, a communications fuckup, it happens to the very best. By the third goal, the team had gone to shit, a bit like the ref.
    Arsenal’s problem, since the holding injury, and constant need to re-jig the defence, with constant injuries and suspensions since holding. The defence has been completely unstable virtually all year, I cannot think of a rival who has had to chop and change anywhere near as much this season.
    Sadly for Mustafi, I doubt he is anywhere near Emerys first choice now or in the future, and probably knows it. I suspect he will move in the summer, perhaps to a more stable defensive setup, where referees actually protect players and properly enforce the rules of the game, where he can build up his confidence and show again he is a decent player.
    Emery has a lot of work to do,this summer, just hope he has the funds, and structure in place to do so. Still no news on the head scout, the Edu TD latest, rumoured to be arriving in late July, which is helpful!
    There is no point for singling out individuals for performances like yesterday, the main culprit was initial selection , compounded by a fixture pile up, injuries and squad issues. Perhaps these new training regimes some players wax lyrical about have taken a toll, as they did initially at Liverpool when Klopp arrived. We traditionally finished the season strongly, looking fresh, this season, we look a bit ragged and down to the bare bones. Maybe a learning point there.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Thanks back to those with the thanks.
    I saw on twitter that somebody expected more analysis. I was listening to the game, so its quite hard to pick up on whats going on. I volunteered because George said he felt mashed and I knew everyone else was too. Who wants to read a review that goes into the finer points when they can be discussed or debated on the forum when youve just lost such an important game?
    Trouble is after a loss or some sort of bs its better to change the environment a bit, hence moving on with a review, means new page, new start. It might have been poor but I thought it would help. Fresh pastures mean new thought and a new start. We cant hang around in the soiled kasi of life all the time.

    Plus I dont give much, you lot do. Think about it, you really do. George runs the website, no mean feat,I cant tell you the amount of respect I have for that, shouldering a great responsibility so others can interact and now doing the review too and Shotts runs his own site now but Im glad still interacts with here, a place of warm welcome and smart comment, also hats off and a bow to Labo and Stew who write/wrote great intros, and I always look/looked forward to them, how they do/did it every week I dont know, I couldnt, Andy Nic week in week out wrote a proper review of the games and again was always great guns for doing that. Come back Andy.
    Then the brilliant, detailed, informative posts of Eddie and Mandy and Rich and Fins and 900ft, Red Shark, rantetta, dc, GP, Alabama, FH, Arsenal Andrew, team spirit and Passenal, Ianspace, and other people who I cant think of and will regret it, all apologies. Really, Im sorry. And gf60 who I hope is still looking in, if such a chance is given. I was re-reading a lot of his old emails the other day and felt so sad, and sometimes real joy.

    Blogs are communities of give and take, important places, but the arent utopias and they can be difficult places despite being on the same side.I was always really grateful that PA existed as UA became too much of a battlefield, and I was part of that, now I feel bitter and feel like in some ways it was a waste of time. But it was a different situation here at PA.
    Probably people like me with Aspergers shouldnt be on blogs as its easy to get things arse about face, and I can be easily overwhelmed and cant read the emotions behind the words and always feel chronically shy unless hiding behind some kind of dumb-ass mask (nom de plumes etc) but even so it didnt stop me feeling a deep respect and empathy for the people Ive met here, and sometimes having a good laugh and a collective shoulder to invisibly lean on. Oddly like the Arsenal, blogs are like teams.
    Since then I have seen the game, and could write some stuff about what went on, but that wasnt my job or even possible yesterday as I had heard and not seen the game.Just glad I could do my tiny bit.
    Keep on keepin on.


  34. see, I said I would forget someone.:iDibs, always a great supporter of peoples comments. Sorry mate!


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