92 Comments

Last Knockings Of A Dire Season.

Good morning all.

The end of the season is nigh. Thank goodness for that. There has been nothing good about this season. The odd good result and the occasional half decent performance sprinkled in among dour games and embarrassing defeats. Personally I’ve found watching the games a chore. Quote frankly it’s been awful. But enough of that, we will look at the season in more depth when the dust settles.

Right, on a positive note, we have the chance of winning 5 games in a row and go into the summer with the hope that there has been an improvement and all will be well next season. Where there’s life there’s hope I suppose?

Brighton play a lovely brand of football, but because they have so few good players, it looks better than the results that it earns. Their strikers are particularly ineffective which always means victories will be few and far between compared to the quality of the build up play. I think Graham Potter would be very good with a better squad of players, like Arsenal for instance, but I better keep that under my hat?

If results go our way today, or against us, depending on how you look at it, we could end up in this joke European competition they have dreamed up for teams not good enough to get into the losers cup we have been competing for for the past 4 seasons. A horrible thought, but on the flip side we would finish above Spurs, which will be a source of great joy and merriment for Arsenal fans given how bad we have been.

We will bid a fond farewell to David Luiz, and that’s a bit sad for me. I like him, think he has done quite well for us and brought some much needed character to the club, let alone the team. Ceballos and Odegaard will also exit the building both having disappointed to varying degrees, but who hasn’t disappointed this season? It makes me wonder if it was them or…………………oh never mind, we’ll leave that for another day as well.

Also I heard that Steve Bould has been sacked, dear me, what next, ask Pat Rice to stop attending games? Steve has been a great servant to us and this will be another link to past greatness that we will lose. F. sake.

Ok, enough for today, enjoy the game and I will see ya all on the other side.

Pedantic George.

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92 comments on “Last Knockings Of A Dire Season.

  1. Just want to say a big thanks to you George for keeping the website going and for all the podcasts (cheers to Shotta too) and to everyone here for always writing thoughtful and insightful posts- despite us witnessing the least interesting version of Arsenal in a quarter century.

    “the food at this place is so terribible!”
    “And such small portions”

    Cheers everyone! COYG!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Very nice of you Mills, and thank you for your support and contributions.

    Like

  3. The sun no longer rises for Mr George it seems. Isn’t it time you changed your name to “Negatively Arsenal”? Dear me. I have read your articles and contributors for several years, and enjoyed your balance and insight. If you believe following Arsenal is hard work just now, reading your daily doom-laden diatribes is like slow indigestion. I shared everyone’s dismay at the treatment and exile of Mesut Ozil, but as with the current situation of Aubamayang, its roots lay in the negotiating of an excessive contract for a great player about to decline. It should not be a reason continually to harbour resentment – and Ozil was my second-favourite Arsenal player of all time.

    You seem completely dismissive of the improved results since Christmas (third best) or defence (third best). You don’t seem to give Arteta’s ideas much shrift, but it seems to me that prioritising defensive organisation had been missing for years and was overdue. You are negative about his pronouncements to develop the attacking side of things, yet maybe he means it and will oversee it. You revile the over-coaching and play-by-numbers, without conceding that until a team evolves into what he wants, any decent coach will try and control things. You make no allowance for how the players and other coaches/managers/ex-players speak highly of him, particularly the current players. Two of our brightest lights, Tierney and Saka, are unstinting in their praise for how he has developed them.

    You seem to have joined the droves (leGroves?) of Arsenal “supporters” who display an unhealthy sense of entitlement, yet I infer that like me, your memories of Arsenal’s fallow years from the fifties to 1971, should make you more humble about where your club “deserves” to be.

    I have watched as one by one, even your most positive contributors have been infected by your broodiness. Cheer up. You can cheer Engerland soon in its quest to fall agonisingly short of glory. Now that’s too mind-numbing for me!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Nice one George.
    Hard to know what to say about this game, except hope we win, and also hope we come back a lot better next season.
    With you all the way on DL, believe overall, a positive to the team, looked like we suffered for a while when he got injured. And if Arteta is to be believed, a good player to have around.i would add he has regularly been on the end of decisions from officials he would have never have experienced at Chelsea, especially the Wolves game which looked like the ref just wanted any excuse. Anyway, good luck to him.
    If we get a St Totts day, well, always worth having, and it will be amusing, what, with the Kane situation as well , but certainly won’t rank as a vintage St Totts
    Not an enjoyable season for us, and others, although I keep reading how there has been a supposed uplift since Boxing Day, except against Villarreal you could say, that really was a season defining performance and result, a shame as I suspect Utd will be there for the taking in the final.

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  5. Since December Arsenal are bettered only by the two manchester clubs in points garnered, and have the third best defence

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  6. With respect, Maxwell, do you honestly believe that positive statements by Tierney and Saka, or any players, were heartfelt, or rather, made in the knowledge that they know on which side their bread is buttered.?

    I dare say, that they have seen better than anyone what happens to any player, or staff member who is not prepared to toe the line.

    First ostracisation, then public criticism, then being dropped and humiliated, before being shipped out with, as we saw yesterday, being blamed for all the club’s ills.

    Also, could Ozil and Auba’s so-called drop in form be due, not to the increased salary, but more to do with their unwillingness to adhere to Arteta’s process at the expense of their undoubted skills?

    Neither of them, as with many others, fitted in with the process, or wanted to compromise themselves by trying to do so.

    The process has already led to just mediocrity.

    That we have been fortunate that our last few games have been against already doomed or teams just escaping relegation, should not necessarily be regarded as evidence of success of the process.

    Please do not quote the Chel$ki win, because we all know there were, how many, 7 changes in the team and they were playing a cup final 3 days later. Hardly a situation to try too hard, despite the fact that they still managed more than 70% possession against us.

    AS I have said before, I would rather trust Delboy than this process.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. silentstan where are we in the goals scored column, lets not forget the teams we lost to, the problem with Arteta’s set up is that yes we are set up to not let in a lot of goals, and against the big teams that come to play, our counter attacking play gives us a chance of a result, but our problem is that we do not create many scoring chances against the lesser teams, and still fall foul to their counter attacking games. We’ve lost to teams this season that we had not lost to in decades, we are equal 9th for goals scored, and 7th for goal difference. Our home form has been awful, 7 wins, 4 draws and 7 defeats, with only 22 goals scored, 21 conceded, we are set up to play like a small club, Arteta does not give our attackers the freedom that is required for good attacking play. Is that going to change over the summer, have we seen anything to suggest we will become a free scoring team next season.

    Arteta is getting praised for fixing our first half of season awful form, which was a problem caused by his selections and formations and tactics, its laughable.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. George I quite liked Arsenal winning the, as you would call them, the Losers Cup in 1970 and the Joke Cup in 1994, and if we get in the Joke Cup next season I hope I enjoy us winning our 3rd European trophy as much as I did the first two

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  9. Thanks jjgsol, that saved me a job.

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  10. Another thing I won’t miss about this season, the dire refereeing this team have faced, and dodgy, selective VAR calls. Compare and contrast with Utd for starters.
    I am not sure of new comer Richard Garlicks role, is he just a glorified Huss Famy replacement? or can he use, hopefully his influence, knowledge and experience to finally get this club a fairer representation? I am not holding my breath btw.
    And yes, I know officials in this league are pretty appalling in general, but they are selective with it.

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  11. of course any player who is a regular under Arteta is going to praise him, I wonder what Nketiah and Nelson would say about their development under Mikel, or what Guendouzi, Torreira or Saliba would say about him

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  12. Liked by 1 person

  13. it seems along with Bould being sacked from his U23 Manager’s role, our first team physio Bruno Mazziotti, who only joined this season is also leaving this summer.

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  14. ah in fairness George, in our last 37 games only 8 teams have gained more points

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  15. David Miles to step down as club secretary
    By
    @AAllenSport –
    May 23, 2021
    0

    Arsenal have confirmed that club secretary David Miles will step down at the end of June after 50 years of service.

    Miles started working for the Gunners as the dust settled on the 1971 Double celebrations. He was just 16-years-old and, in his own words, “left school on the Friday, had a ‘gap weekend’ and then started work on the Monday…and I’ve been here ever since.”

    He began as club shop worker, progressed to the box office, became assistant to Ken Friar in the mid-1980s and then took over as club and company secretary in the early 1990s.

    Among his many responsibilities, Miles used to supervise all player transfer dealings and was involved in determining fixture dates. He was also a regular Arsenal representative at UEFA draws.

    Speaking to the official matchday programme ahead of today’s final game of the season with Brighton, Ken Friar, Arsenal’s life president, said:

    “I interviewed David for his position when he was 16 and over the subsequent 50 years, I can tell you that he has demonstrated the most remarkable loyalty I have ever known in a person – a truly wonderful servant for Arsenal Football Club.

    He added: “He has been an excellent company secretary, possessing the many and varied qualities required for that position and is hugely respected within the game. And above all, David’s a great guy.”

    Miles won’t be stepping away from the club completely, he will retain a matchday role in the directors’ box.

    Congratulations to David on his incredible stint at the club, we wish him all the best for the future.

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  16. Steve Bould has been rubbish. Just because hes “Araenal thru and thru” shouldnt give him a free ride.

    You’re very quick to slag off the manager, one who won the FA Cup in his first few months and who really is so inexperienced, its little wonder he and the team have been inconsistent.

    The board wanted him, what did they expect? Instant success? Look at Solkskjaer at United, this time last year and now. If Artera follows a similar trajectory and he really could, then we’d be daft to sack him, after he has gained valuable experience he would take elsewhere.

    Then compare him to the spuds ex manager, so called special one and won eff FA AGAIN!

    YES, it’s been a poor season, weve been consistently inconsistent and players have been poor, out of form, ETC..I’m sure if the same happens next season it will be the manager getting hoofed. But as I said I think (hope) he turns things round next time.

    He will need players to either step up, come good, maintain progress and/or cut their losses and leave!

    Gabriel looked a top CB initially and lost his way, but hes still young and so can still come good.
    Leno I really rate him, but he hasnt been great.
    Partey has been a bit of a pooper !

    Auba top striker, but lost his way not least after getting ill.

    Bellerin maybe it is time for him to move on, along with Luiz, Willian, Kolasinac and Xhaka.

    Positives (this is supposed to be Positively Arsenal after all!)

    Chambers; really versatile and gives his all
    Holding but I’ve always rated him
    Tierney what a pkayer/man, we really fucked up not having quality cover for him (hopefully Bertrand?).
    Saka: goes without saying. What a huge talent
    Smith Rowe so happy he has taken his chance
    Pepe yes he has really come on, well done to him!
    Laca top pro
    Elneny really under rated and important squad player.

    We have a lot of players who need to be sold or loaned out again… thay probably includes Eddie, Nelson, as well as Torreira, Gwen Doozy, AMN (altho again, I really like him n think hes a good player in several positions) and the players mentioned above, plus the 2 on loan from Madrid, then hopefully the squad can be refreshed and supplemented by some youth teamers again, Martinelli given more of a chance and a new signing or 2.

    Maybe one will be the fella from Brighton?

    Up the Arse!

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  17. Arteta (asked the top 5 teams will strengthen in the summer and is spending the only way to keep up or close the gap with them) “There is no other way to do it.”

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  18. Totally with you Mandy about Luiz. Most of the penalties he has given away would never have been penalties in his Chelsea days: must be hard to have to change the way you have been defending for years, and in the same League with the same Refs too.
    I wouldn’t be surprised if Odegaard stays: he was starting to find his feet here but then got injured during the international break. I think the last couple of games have seen him making his way back again.
    And the points Maxwell makes are entirely reasonable: there is always more than one way of looking at things.

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  19. I wonder what roles Ek has promised Henry, Bergkamp and Vieira for their support. Director of Football, First team manager, Chairman, they could rotate roles if they fail at one they could move to the next one.

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  20. Thanks Millsy for your kind comments above. BTW a new podcast is imminent as me and George allow the facts reveal themselves rather than relying solely on our feelings and opinions.

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  21. Tuesday July 13th is the date for our first pre-season friendly, its away to Hibernian

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  22. BTW George thanks for reminding the “more positive than positive” fans of Emery’s 21 game unbeaten run came crashing down because it masked poor performances. They come here, on Twitter and elsewhere suggesting that Arsenal being 3rd since Christmas or the current 5 game unbeaten run means the dire football that Arteta sets the team up to play is sustainable. Do they think Arteta’s photogenic looks, superior English and, I must admit, brilliant PR will save him from the same end as Emery in the long run?

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  23. Not sure Ek believes he will ever get it.
    I think the post Christmas stats however positive they look from the outside surely anyone watching us stumbling and bumbling along can honestly say with any confidence that we will have any sort of consistency next season or finish top three. I would assume anybody quoting those stats would still place us sixth or below if they were forced to put their mortgage a finishing position.
    Anyway enough of the fantasy let’s gets back to the reality of today’s game. As much as we have disappointed by Mikel finishing above the spuds would be hugely satisfying and extremely funny. Getting in to any form of Europe next season has to help on recruitment so also has to be seen as a prize worth aquiring.
    Whatever the season, whatever the problems I want to finish with a flourish and win nicely today COYG.

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  24. ‘The time is out of joint.’
    I could be wrong here but since that lot down the road have finished in front of us we have seen Brexit, Trump in the White House, Natural Disasters on an unprecedented scale, and a global pandemic.
    Hoping for a miracle here, of course, but an Arsenal win and Tottenham failing to secure all three points this afternoon will see a welcome return, not only to St. Totteringham’s Day, but also to normality.
    So much depends on a Red Wheelbarrow.

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  25. Which Pigmob hatchet and fix it game manager team have we got for today?

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  26. Maxwell seems to think you lot are just a bunch of sheep that follow my lead. I feel powerful now.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. so how many of today’s match day squad will not be here next season, Arteta has promised a big shake up of the squad this summer, we have Ryan, who won’t be involved today, Ceballos and Odegaard all here on loan, will any of them be here next season. Bellerin is out injured today, but is widely expected to leave this summer, David Luiz is leaving. Nketiah has stared 4 epl games this season, Nelson has 2 games as sub, can’t see either being here much longer.
    Lacazette has one year left on his contract.

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  28. well Ian if Ek does not believe he will get to takeover AFC then he is a right cunt, as he and his ex player mouthpieces are stirring up fan protests, encouraging it, calling for it. If they ever do get to take over AFC I hope if things are not going well at any point that the same fans are as vocal as the Ek guys are now seeking them to be.

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  29. Dead rubber with no consequences. We finish 7th or 10th is immaterial. Gone are the days when we finished top4 for 20 years but the idiot fans thought it was useless to finish top4. Did they got what they wished for?Out of top4 even out of top6. Had they backed Wenger we would have been enjoying our football for a couple of more seasons.
    We have regressed both on and off the pitch. The club is even in a poor state financially posting Red digits in the financials since the great man was ousted.The fans have suffered the owners have suffered.Arsenal has lost its identity.

    Who is to blame?
    Can anyone explain.

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  30. Who is to blame? Wenger and Ozil I’m told.

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  31. I see fat bloke is the man on the middle today suggesting the centre circle will be well policed today as will the cake after the game.

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  32. Team: Leno, Chambers, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney, Xhaka, Partey, Odegaard, Pepe, Smith Rowe, Aubameyang.

    Subs: Runarsson, Saka, Ceballos, Lacazette, Cedric, Mari, Elneny, Nketiah, Martinelli.

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  33. Brighton: Sanchez, Jahanbakhsh, Webster, Dunk, White, Burn, Bissouma, Moder, Gross, Mac Allister, Trossard.

    Subs: Steele, McGill, Karbownik, Connolly, Lallana, Alzate, Tau, Caicedo, Zeqiri

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  34. George, I must apologise for coming unwelcome into your exclusive club. I thought that as with other blogs I follow, anyone was welcome to join the debate however different their opinions – as long as they were respectful and polite. It seems, however, from your comment that I am an outsider (‘you lot are a bunch of sheep’). So the club members – you lot – can chortle at George’s little joke at the non-member’s expense.

    I hope, George, that your more recent comment about Wenger and Ozil is not directed at me. I’m sure it can’t be: you don’t know me, you don’t know my opinions beyond what I posted earlier, but you do know how highly I rated Ozil. Just for clarification, although it’s largely irrelevant, I was and remain an AKB acolyte.

    As to jjgsol’ s and eduardo’s assertions regarding players being guarded in their comments purely for self-protection, and players who have had a problem with being loaned out, or just not selected – well, I certainly heard and read Saka’s and Tierney’s comments, without any access to their motivations or thoughts, and whereas I see that certain players have had a raw deal, that is just my opinion. I have no idea if they share Tierney’s expressed views on Arteta, or yours, because I haven’t seen anything they’ve said about it.

    Shotta’s articles were a major reason I started reading this blog, but to extrapolate from what I said, to suggest that I am happy with everything that’s happening, or compare the current style of play with that which we enjoyed under Wenger, is frankly disingenuous – so maybe you didn’t mean me! But if you did, well I apologise for ‘coming on here’ as an uninvited guest.

    Do I need to spell out why I posted to begin with? I was prompted by the irony of a site that calls itself “Positively Arsenal” being so relentlessly negative. And that was all. I’m sorry if I touched a nerve.

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  35. Yes George, I’m a Northern Soul following, ARSENAL supporting, Socialist so I do follow your lead, but if you have a few sheep on here that’s nothing compared to the herds that aimlessly follow AST and ATV to extremes.

    Liked by 1 person

  36. only taken till the 38th game for Willian to lose his place in the squad

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  37. Maxwell, why on earth would my comment “Wenger and Ozil”, be aimed at you? And why would you come on and insinuate that I lead others, and think that would not amuse me? Finally, the “irony” is not lost on me, in fact I mention it relentlessly , both on here and on twitter.

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  38. Arsenal say Willian’s absence from the squad is down to a tight calf

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  39. Spuds and Everton losing.

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  40. joe willock has scored for Newcastle, his 7th game in a row to score for them.

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  41. any other English player do that and they would be in the England squad for the Euros this summer

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  42. goal ruled out for offside, Holding.

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  43. HT: Arsenal 0-0 Brighton

    on top without creating much, holding goal ruled out for offside and gabriel hit the bar with a header late on

    other half times

    villa 1-0 cfc
    lcfc 1-1 spurs
    lfc 1-0 palace
    city 2-0 everton

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  44. They are good at cheating with VAR this lot.

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  45. Arsenal 2-0 up with Pepe scoring both goals

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  46. Partey hits the bar with a powerful drive,

    saka on for ESR

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  47. 78 minutes Lacazette on for Aubameyang

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  48. spurs now level with lcfc, 7th may not be ours after all

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