Editorial

Arsenal Show Up At The Bridge

By Kevin Whitcher

Online Ed – First point at Chelsea since 2011

It may have only been a point, and Arsenal remain in the bottom half of the table, but psychologically, the point gained at Chelsea has provided relief all round for the manager, players and supporters, after two very shaky away performances so far this season.

Another season, another long term Danny Welbeck injury

Mesut Ozil was supposedly injured for this one. Scrub that, he was dropped, but the manager rarely does ignominy for his underperforming players. The German is a liability in big Premier League away games, a luxury the team cannot afford. Now in his final year at the club, perhaps the indulgence is over. Perhaps Arsene Wenger is flexing the muscles of his puny frame the way he has done with the CEO. It will be interesting to see how often Ozil is utilized, and if he starts in the League Cup against Doncaster, his fall from grace will be pretty much confirmed.

Alexis Sanchez is in a similar situation. Although he can offer a lot more than Ozil when the going gets tough, Wenger is thinking more about the team now. And in reality, the Chilean is almost certainly not going to perform at his best if fielded twice in four days. So his selection for last Thursday and the fact he remained on the pitch for the entire 90 minutes against Cologne indicated he was never going to start at the Bridge.

Someone had printed up some £50 notes with the manager’s head on them, with the words ‘Bank of Bullsh*t’, wads of which were periodically thrown into the air in the away section. A point at Chelsea is not going to heal a very deep divide, a disconnection and distrust of Wenger by a significant portion of the fanbase.

And the reason is that we are still, after several seasons of the same, witnessing a Jekyll and Hyde football team. Contrast the application against Chelsea with the game against Liverpool. Of course, Sanchez, Ozil and the Ox all started at Anfield, to say nothing of fielding players out of position. It was one of several ignominious nadirs in recent campaigns.

Wenger retained his three at the back formation yesterday, and there were fears that Xhaka and Ramsey might expose the men behind them with their indiscipline, but for the most part, Arsenal were solid. The contribution made by Iwobi and Welbeck - being willing to work harder than Ozil and Sanchez did against Liverpool - cut down the amount of time Chelsea had to create. The shape of the team was far less ragged than it has been and it helped Arsenal that Eden Hazard did not start the game.

The best chances fell to Pedro at one end (who should have beaten Cech) and Ramsey at the other (who was unfortunate to hit the post). In the second half, with the introduction of Hazard, the home team had far more attempts on target, but Petr Cech dealt with them satisfactorily. The ball wasn’t given away cheaply as we have seen too often in previous matches.

So, something to build upon, although of course, we have been down this road before and it hasn’t ended well. The nature of the latter day Arsenal is that consistency of performance is something that cannot be relied upon. So while this is encouraging, people are not going to look at Arsenal as credible contenders until Easter has come and gone and they are still in the mix (which currently they are not, but only five games so far and all that). And of course, as night follows day, just as he is establishing himself in the first team, Danny Welbeck gets an injury that threatens to keep him out of action for half the season. Twas ever thus. At least Sead Kolasinac’s leg wasn’t broken by David Luiz’s x-rated over the ball lunge, a worrying moment that fully deserved the straight red that will see Luiz banned for three matches. It was too late in the game yesterday to benefit the Gunners.

With Welbeck’s injury, the manager is unlikely to have the option of continuing to not start his wantaway stars. Certainly, it would be madness to put Walcott in ahead of Sanchez, although there is a school of thought that Reiss Nelson may be worth a try. Whatever the decision, it has to be about the team now. Sanchez knows he is at a club that is not serious about competing for the title when it comes to actions rather than words, hence the near £30 million profit in the summer transfer window. So he amuses himself on the bench. It doesn’t look good. But his whole situation has not been handled well. He is a winner in a team of players that is not set up to primarily win, but to express themselves. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. It falls apart often enough to ensure there is never a sniff of a league title these days.

Arsenal face West Brom, Brighton, Watford, Everton and Swansea before the double header of Manchester City and Spurs. They surprised us with their performance at Chelsea. When good results are not a surprise, and banker three point games are invariably won, we can start to believe again. On a positive note, the team did demonstrate that they can get a result against the odds without Sanchez starting, something we will have to get used to in a year’s time, so best get used to it now.

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18th September 2017 09:25:10

(8.7/10)

Comments and Reaction

User comments on this article are now closed. If you want to continue the debate, why not do so on the Gooner Forum.

TonyEvans  10:01am 18th Sep 2017

It would be nice to think that Wenger has learnt lessons from the Anfield rout, but that would be no more than wishful thinking. Good point and performance yesterday, but we've been down this road too many times before to be taken in by a one off decent display against one of the big clubs. Think I read 14 games now since we beat one of our fellow top teams - if indeed we actually qualify for that tag now! - Post No. 109855


The Man From UNCLE  10:05am 18th Sep 2017

"The ball wasn’t given away cheaply as we have seen too often in previous matches" - no, because Elneny didn't come on until the last ten minutes. A corner has been turned. There is light at the end of the tunnel. A new dawn has broken. This could be the result that kickstarts the season. Or then again, maybe not. Are AFC turning into a high-class version of Swansea City? Tune in again same time next week to find out. - Post No. 109856


Yes its Ron  10:08am 18th Sep 2017

That was the regime sustaining performance they eeked out as per normal. It ll be another 2 yrs before they dig in again v a top side and graft a result out. It was predictable. Wenger says it was due to the transfer window being closed. What a load of utter boll---s. - Post No. 109857


Up For Grabs Now  10:26am 18th Sep 2017

Worst possible outcome, as it once again buys Wenger more time, until the next humiliation, which we all know will arrive as sure as night follows day! - Post No. 109858


Bard  10:35am 18th Sep 2017

Good and fair report Kev. Its a sign of how far we have fallen that we enthuse over the fact that everyone put in a shift. Paradoxically the fact that we did it without our 2 so called' superstars' shows the futility and stupidity of our transfer window. Wenger's desperation to hold onto them will cost the club north of £150m and two weeks later he realises the club do better without them. Expensive f*** up. - Post No. 109859


Seven Kings Gooner1  10:35am 18th Sep 2017

Good review Kev - however you can't fool me, George Graham picked that team and gave the team talk, someone locked Arsene in the broom cupboard till the game was over. - Post No. 109860


peter wain  10:46am 18th Sep 2017

Naïve to think that Wenger learns any lessons. He is too arrogant to think he ever makes a mistake. Yes it was a good performance but we did not win and another bad performance is just around the corner. - Post No. 109861


Paulo75  10:56am 18th Sep 2017

Tony Evans - we beat both Man Utd and Chelsea in the league last season (Both qualifying as top teams I assume). - Post No. 109862


Exeter Ex  11:03am 18th Sep 2017

We know that performance wasn't a result of learned lessons from the Liverpool match because Wenger told us so. He said that was due to the transfer window still being open and 'you can have a bad performance in a season of 55 games'. So he's dismissed it. I think the greater discipline and application we saw from the players yesterday was borne of a desire to not be humiliated again. It was job done in that respect, hence all the celebrating of a 0-0. Now they'll go back to the normal 'try if we feel like it' approach. - Post No. 109863


Yes its Ron  11:22am 18th Sep 2017

I keep hearing this Sanchez is a winner stuff. Its over done They ground that out yesterday without him and Mr lethargy Ozil, another 'winner'i suppose. They slipped up not selling AS to City. If its not too late to loan him and then get paid in January, they ought to revive it in my view. Why should he and Oxil get picked again now after that team yesterday dug in and played for one another? I reckon theres quite a bit of animosity by certain players to Arsenals so called 2 superstars and to a degree i can understand it. GG would have had no s--t of either of them and moved both on. - Post No. 109864


foxinthebox2001  11:41am 18th Sep 2017

Thanfully Conte does not indulge in the mind games Mourinho is so fond of, and Wenger is so fond of falling for. Imagine if the opposition coach had baited Wenger by suggesting Chelsea are the most attacking team in the league. Cue Wengers gung ho, caught on the break, Ozil daydreaming, Ramsey emptying the midfield, formation. But fear not, we haven't seen the last of it. - Post No. 109865


Seven Kings Gooner1  12:03pm 18th Sep 2017

Foxinthebox, good point, AW would have fallen for that dig hook line & sinker. Ron, if Arsenal played like that every game - win or lose I would be back watching them. It has never been about winning trophies, for me, it's about putting in the effort for the team and the fans. It does also help when the players line up somewhere near their preferred positions. - Post No. 109866


TonyEvans  12:33pm 18th Sep 2017

Paulo75 - I meant, of course, away from home. - Post No. 109867


Mark Mywurdz  14:16pm 18th Sep 2017

Despite Ozil and Sanchez being our 'world class superstars', we are in fact a much better 'team' without them, particularly Ozil. With him playing as a number 10, it throws the whole balance of the team out. We started with Kolisinac as a left wing back. Wonders will never cease. - Post No. 109868


Bard  14:23pm 18th Sep 2017

I wonder just how enamoured the rest team are with the Ozil/Sanchez axis. It seems odd that without them we functioned as a proper team. It will be interesting to see if Wenger has the cojones to leave them out for any length of time.Yesterday reminded me of the City game a season or so ago when the Coq played in midfield because of all the injuries and we put in our best performance for a long while. - Post No. 109869


Yes its Ron  14:23pm 18th Sep 2017

SKG - Yes, i can agree with you totally. Im not sure i ll ever resurrect going back to home game again, but i d certainly do more than the average 3/4 away games per season that ive done this last 5-6 years. There are so many facets about Arsenal now that mirror the mid 60s i think. A sieve for a defence, inadequate players in key positions, ill disciplined players who go walkabouts in games, thrashings and collapses etc etc. As we emerged from the mid 60s under Dons coaching which made us robust, rigid tough and while we were quite low scoring in that period from 19868 onwards we all rejoiced in the new mental toughness that he imbued in the Club didnt we. No longer maulings from Chelsea Spurs and Utd. They became things of the past. As you say, a team that turns up and fights for the clubs badge was all that we needed then and its all that need now. If it means we have to become dour, so be it. Most successful Clubs do. Detest him as i do its what makes that puffed up Portuguese p---ck at Utd the Coach that he is. - Post No. 109870


TonyEvans  15:03pm 18th Sep 2017

Ron and SKG - interesting that quite a number of Liverpool supporters now aren't so enthralled with Klopp, as he seems to be nearly as bad as Wenger when it comes to valuing good defending. The old adage 'you build from the back' has never been so true and, as you say Ron, Maureen knows this only too well. The art of good defending, in the main, has been sadly lost in the overhyped glitz and glamour that is the Premier League, which is a great shame. Over zealous refereeing doesn't help either, with good strong tackles often seen as bookable offences. Also, quite obviously, the more that is done to stamp out cheating and diving the better. - Post No. 109871


mbg  15:24pm 18th Sep 2017

A point won, I bet that had/will have the AKB's partying all night and getting moist, you know, we're back, on track, we've learned, it's on, etc, etc, until the usual of course, a point gained keeps us where we belong. wenger out. - Post No. 109872


mbg  15:36pm 18th Sep 2017

Ron, well done you called that right again, the point didn't surprise any of us, and neither will the next embarrassment that's just round the corner and where we end up again, corner turned ? You couldn't make it up. wenger out. - Post No. 109873


Yes its Ron  16:08pm 18th Sep 2017

Hi Tony - I honestly think Klopp HAS to win a Cup or reach top 4 this yr just to survive there, i really do. Ive never been enamoured by him. Hes a showman and all the teeth gritting and fist pumping is a big front in my view. Hes a bit of a joke i feel. His demeanour will carry him a fair way at Liverpool of course. They love to see the blood curdling passion, whether its genuine or not etc etc. His defence makes Arsenals seem like Fort Knox. Yr right with the refereeing Tony. Its ruined football for me, together with the diving and conning as you say. If Refs were given discretion about when to see red and yellow, they wouldn't use them half so much in my view and as a result that would remove the diving in time. I suppose the histrionics of the dives etc all make for good TV though doesn't it, together with the emphasis on all out attack and the distorted offside rules at the expense of proper defending. It all gives refs centre stage too which a good many of them milk like crazy to get. I d like West Brom to win the league so that real defending would get its place back as part of football and cock a snoop at yr Klopps Wengos and Saint Peps plus two big fingers firmly up to the TV companies and the established so called 'top' PL clubs, none of which will be dominating Europe any time soon. - Post No. 109874


TonyEvans  16:18pm 18th Sep 2017

Hi Ron - it wouldn't surprise me if Klopp is on his bike after this season, as I don't see Liverpool as real contenders for the League. He needs to do a 'Wenger' and fluke at least the FA cup, and definitely finish top four, as you say. Agree also that refs are hamstrung by the rigid rules they have to abide by - discretion seems to have gone out of the window. You are absolutely right though when you say that some refs milk the limelight for all they are worth, usually to the complete detriment of the game they are in charge of. - Post No. 109875


Seven Kings Gooner1  16:24pm 18th Sep 2017

Ron, Tony - great points about Mo, he does in the end burn all his bridges but not before he has got everything out of his players for a couple of seasons. He is very demanding and of course it's all about him but his sides always win trophies. On another point I think Arsenal, as a team and a club are missing Pat Rice, even with Wengo's double speak, Pat was an honest man in amongst a band of chance merchants. Ray Parlour speaks so highly of him in his biography, when Pat was his coach. Glad to have seen him play - he was so unlucky not to lift a few more trophies when he was skipper. - Post No. 109876


John F  17:18pm 18th Sep 2017

I get the feeling that the players are not too keen on Sanchez and that Wenger wanted him to go but something went wrong behind the scenes which maybe why Dick Law is leaving at the end of the month.Good battling display it is amazing what can be achieved when players are played in their right positions,unfortunatly Wenger cannot be relied on not to tinker in future especially if yesterday's more organised performance was down to one of the coaches.I remember the days when Chelsea would celebrate getting a draw like a win against us now it Arsenal doiit.How times have changed along with expectations. - Post No. 109877


Scruff  17:42pm 18th Sep 2017

On the subject of referees is it possible for a memo to be FA to remind them that if a player requires treatment due to a bookable foul he is not required to leave the field of play as Kos was . This left us with 10 men until the ref signalled him back on ( it may have only been 30 seconds but he had to sprint back to his position whilst Chelsea had the ball). As for the game it's amazing what can be achieved whilst playing player's in their correct position and instructing the whole team to keep it's shape , probably won't last too long as they will all be going gung ho again and another thrashing will be due - Post No. 109878


Yes its Ron  17:44pm 18th Sep 2017

SKG - Yes mate, Pat was a good bloke. Solid full back too wasnt he. Top professional. Probably why he wrapped up when he did, seeing all of the modern day lightweights there skiving off from playing for no more than a bad hair day! I think Pat was ill though as well wasnt he? We could use a few Ray Parlours. John F - i think the basic root of Wengos coaching issues lie firmly in his arrogance and contempt for other teams football and their coaches. His notion of only concerning himself with Arsenals game is totally disrespectful to all of his opponents. He s got the humility of Mussolini. In fact Mussolini was shy and retiring type compared to Wengo. He may be eloquent but its his arrogance that divides him from his contemporaries and why most only grudgingly respect him. I dont count Mourinho in that batch though as hes just a short arsed ignorant pri-k with exactly the self same characteristics as Wenger and i dont think he respects anybody else either, though he makes out that he does. Its why they each rub each up the wrong way. - Post No. 109879


mbg  18:22pm 18th Sep 2017

SKG, yes with Father Jacks soiled Y fronts, the team talk certainly had somebody elses fingerprints all over it. wenger out. - Post No. 109880


John F  18:47pm 18th Sep 2017

You could be right Ron.I think when things get desperate he is open to advice from his coaches but when his confidence returns he reasserts his authority over the way the team plays.Liverpool away was a Wenger team,Chelsea away showed the influence of some one else as it took into account the way Chelsea play,something even ex players have said Wenger does not do. - Post No. 109881


TonyEvans  19:14pm 18th Sep 2017

SKG - probably because he didn't score many, I remember Pat Rice getting on the end of a cross, having run virtually the whole length of the pitch to get there - against Stoke I think, for a classic 1-0 to the Arsenal. Those were the days! - Post No. 109882


GoonerRon  21:27pm 18th Sep 2017

Really encouraging display, but doesn't mean much if we don't press on with wins in this next run of decent fixtures and then follow up with a similar performance against Citeh and Spuds. - Post No. 109884


A Cornish Gooner  21:32pm 18th Sep 2017

Talking of 'solid full backs' , there was a good article by Barney Ronay in today's Guardian, in praise of Sead Kolasinac's presence in the Arsenal side. His final paragraph also sums up what most of us on here have been thinking/saying: "For Arsenal it is far too early to interpret the spirit shown in the past two games as some kind of turning point. More likely Kolasinac’s fine form might just summon a note of regret, a sense of chances missed and seasons gone sour, that early-Wenger dynasty of strong technical football neglected in the mannered drift of the last few years" - Post No. 109885


markymark  23:07pm 18th Sep 2017

Tony Evans - was it against Birmingham? I seem to remember Trevor Francis scoring for them fairly early on and then Rice doing this run late on. I would have only been about 7-8 at the time so memory is really hazy. Thinking of a comment from Ron previously I can still smell grass and old Holborn or maybe Golden Virginia roll-ups as the smell of Highbury - Post No. 109886


mbg  23:39pm 18th Sep 2017

I see TOF has regurgitated the old menteel speereet again, and he actually believes it. You couldn't make it up. wenger out. - Post No. 109887


mbg  23:51pm 18th Sep 2017

SKG, Pat should have left with a few more in his assistant role career too, and also with a far better reputation than he did, it was thanks/down to wenger he didn't on both counts. wenger out. - Post No. 109888


TonyEvans  8:21am 19th Sep 2017

markymark - I don't think it was Birmingham. Stoke sprang to mind for some reason but, having googled as best I could, I can only find a 1-0 defeat against Stoke in 1975 that Pat played in. Perhaps he missed with the header afterall (that would be more than likely in the dark Arsenal days of 1975), and my memory is playing tricks with me! - Post No. 109889


The Man From UNCLE  9:23am 19th Sep 2017

A look at the records shows Pat Rice scored in successive home games against Birmingham; 1977/78 (1-1 ) and 1978/79 (3-1). Could have been either game? I was just too young to go in them days. - Post No. 109890


GSPM  9:32am 19th Sep 2017

Good performance for a change, but we have seen too many false dawns to get excited. A sustained challenge is needed and wins away for any real change to have taken place. Until then its Groundhog. Its only a point, but its a start I suppose.... - Post No. 109891


Bard  9:51am 19th Sep 2017

Pat Rice is a proper Arsenal legend. Not sure how much input he had. Both him and Bouldy were top defenders. I cant imagine for one minute our shambolic defending over the years has much to do with them. mbg, dead right mate. On and on about our mental spirit. We are about as mentally strong as a paper bag in the rain. - Post No. 109892


Cyril  10:02am 19th Sep 2017

At the cherries game, it was too hard to tell as they never troubled the back 3 at all, but Mustafi looked perfect for that role. Watching the Chelsea game has firmed up my belief. He looked really good. Kalashnikov, as we call him in the pub is brilliant. As simple as that. A back three can only work if you support it. It's there to do it's job and be defensive with back ups. If you get the balance right and you have the right ball players and ruthlessness, you can get plenty of goals as well. Ozil could be the broken link here as you have to put shifts in all over the pitch. You have to press players for 1st and second balls if you are in an attacking area and you have to drop in when necessary if the three are stretched. None of which Ozil does. The only other alternative if he is a world class player is buy a 40 to 50 mill powerful holding player to free him. You can rotate Ramsey/Ozil for a whole season to keep them fresh. The formation is crying out for a holding midfielder. If he gets that, he may keep half his team fit for the crucial games. - Post No. 109893


TonyEvans  10:49am 19th Sep 2017

The Man From Uncle - must have been Birmingham (well remembered markymark) and I just forgot they scored too! Could have sworn it was a 1-0 home win, but 40 odd years does tend to dull the old memory banks. Have a vague memory of watching the highlights of the game afterwards on MOTD and Motty yelling 'he's run the length of the pitch for that one'. Funny how some goals / games (apart from the classics) are better remembered than others - sometimes for no obvious reason at all. - Post No. 109894


Bard  10:53am 19th Sep 2017

Cyril; oh if you were only right mate. However we are game or two on from fielding Bellerin at left back, leaving Kalashnicov on the bench, playing Monreal at CB and playing the Ox as a way of sweetening him up. History suggests he decides on the players and then fits them into whatever package looks good on the day. Occasionally he stumbles on something that works and he sticks with it until they get thumped. But you are talking about team building and Wenger doesnt do that. - Post No. 109895


mbg  10:55am 19th Sep 2017

Something to build on Ed ? You could say that under any other manager in the prem, but this is the arrogant egoistic weasel wenger we're talking about. When has he ever built on anything let alone a one off performance earning us just a point ? You'd think we actually one something such is the whooping and celebrating from some of getting a measly point, (sad how far we've fallen)no we all know what way the arrogant old fraud will go and what will happen, and it will surprise none. We want wenger out. - Post No. 109896


markymark  11:59am 19th Sep 2017

Yes it's Ron and others - knowing your love of Mourinho:) I did a bit of digging. It turns out that good old Maureen spent his childhood days at his Uncle's an Industrial Big hitter under the Falange regime. His future wife's childhood was spent out in Angola where her father was injured in the Angolan wars. I highly suspect that both sides of the family had significant classic fascist leanings ( I believe Portugal was the last fascist state? ) . So maybe this is where the arrogant , entitlement , egoist springs from. Of course we could say the same about Wengo too. Not yet found any links with the Vichy Government yet! - Post No. 109897


Arseneknewbest  13:01pm 19th Sep 2017

Hi Marky - On the back of your interesting point about that amoeba Mourinho, just read an interesting FT article by Simon Kuper in the FT from January this year. Plenty of circumstantial evidence in his upbringing to suggest that he would have been favourably influenced by facism. You can just tell from his demeanour that he's unlikely to be a peace-loving socialist driven by a love for all humanity. That reminds me - anyone seen anything from Jeff W lately? Sunday was a flash in the pan - a result achieved despite wengo, not because of him. I had a huge amount of respect for what Pat R achieved as a player. But as a coach, none of us really know what he was like because of the omerta when it comes to real news, i.e. the truth, at wengo's Arsenal. We neither know if he was blindly loyal, and therefore practically supine, or if he was constantly trying to put wengo right on the rather important issue of how to play defensive football. Same gos for Bould. Another mystery, barely worth speculating on sadly. - Post No. 109898


Cyril  13:31pm 19th Sep 2017

Bard, I hear you. It almost fells like sabotage. Perhaps, he is a double agent. - Post No. 109899


Yes its Ron  13:48pm 19th Sep 2017

AKB - surly and odious come to mind when seeing Mourinho. I know a decent playing career isnt a prerequisite to become a good Coach but in his case, i dont think i could resist asking him to display his medals if i was his player and being moaned at by him. Horrible, curled lip,little and insignificant urchin. Footballs given him a false gravitas that i doubt he'd have obtained anywhere else. - Post No. 109900


Arseneknewbest  16:32pm 19th Sep 2017

Yes it's Ron - I wholly agree with your characterisation of JM. He's a thorougly odious character. I think many right-thinking manure fans also see it this way but are prepared to hold their noses if the team's fortunes are revived a little. Football can be like a Faustian pact sometimes. That said,I could never reconcile myself to our own,albeit different,managerial beelzebub. - Post No. 109901


Roy  17:32pm 19th Sep 2017

So that's 22 away games against the other so called big clubs since the start of 2013 - 14. Two wins. At least the goals conceded column didn't go up, which currently stands at 52. Doesn't seem so good now, does it ? Wenger out. - Post No. 109902


Yes its Ron  17:47pm 19th Sep 2017

AKB - Hi matey. I think quite a few in the Utd hierarchy, certainly Bobby Charlton consider him as we do and chose to bite the bullet to appoint him after the Moyes and Van Gaal appointments. It was a case in Utds Boardroom i feel of 'we must have (unfortunately as most of us detest him)' to get them back on the radar again. He was as rude and uncouth as he naturally is when at SW6. I could tolerate that back then. At least he was being what he is. However, at Man U he tries to be more dignified and attempts to project himself in a more sober manner. We can see its killing him to do it and it flies full in the face of his usual habits, manner and demeanour. He s doing it as he thinks hes at a higher level in football now, which of course he is compared to Chelsea. I think hes been severely urged to watch his step in front of the media by Utd as a condition of staying in the job. He ll crack eventually and let himself down badly and the whole thing will end up in acrimony and angst and they ll sack him or he ll flounce off curling his lip. It always does for his type. Once a scurrilous little s--t, always a scurrilous little s--t. Ive always admired Rafa Benitez for shunning him totally and never engaging with him nor rising to his bait, much to Mourinhos chagrin. As ever, our Arsene has always allowed Mourinho under his thin skin, as he foolishly has with many, many other Coaches. Wengers not so smart as he likes to think he is when it comes to measuring up people and handling their attempts to rile him. Hes always been easy prey for them. Fergie maxed out on winding him up for years and it worked against Arsenal for years in games v Utd. Wenger says it didnt bother him but it clearly did and worse still Wenger allowed his discomfort to get into his teams. It cost Arsenal a few matches v Utd in my view. - Post No. 109903


Alsace  19:33pm 19th Sep 2017

Marky mark. Portugal was ruled by Dr Salazar from the 20's to the late 60's. His regime outlived him by a few years until the 74 revolution. Salazar was named and elected by the Portuguese as their greatest ever living chap which is remarkable considering his secret police and spending the entirety of GDP keeping Portugal's empire into the post colonial era. Privileged background or not, he has won the champions league with and without resources. He is not a specialist in failure and can organise a defence. I would bite your arm off for him as our manager. Oh to be a fly on the wall on his first day in the job when he puts Walcott and Ramsey on the list and kicks them in the balls for good measure. - Post No. 109904


mbg  19:35pm 19th Sep 2017

Roy, that's not a stat we'll hear to often shouted from the AKB mount, so much for all this getting moist over a point. But as we all know it doesn't much (maybe as there's not a lot)for the AKB's and wenger fans to get excited about these days. We want wenger out now. - Post No. 109905


John F  20:22pm 19th Sep 2017

If this season plays out with Utd and City fighting for the title then we will see the real Maureen.He has history with Pep and when the pressure mounts his nastiness will come out with every dropped point. - Post No. 109906


markymark  20:36pm 19th Sep 2017

Alsace - Personally I'd love to see us lift a title but feel that the Mourinho behaviours could completely blow up. My preference is a man who is going about his business at Newcastle and would handle the 100m we have available with some care. - Post No. 109907


Alsace  21:06pm 19th Sep 2017

MM. Don't get me wrong. I'm happy for you or Kevin or Vic Akers to be manager. Just so long as it isn't the creature. - Post No. 109908


TOOAW  21:32pm 19th Sep 2017

Interesting to hear on this site that the Ox left for better things and as Kevin stated better coaching !!!!! Bejesus, Arsene should be knighted for taking £35 mil for someone of very little talent. - Post No. 109909


Cyril  22:30pm 19th Sep 2017

Kolashnikov is the real deal. Watching him close up from where I sit he is fast. Not in the conventional way but in the way he can move a ball in and out in one move with his left foot and then pounce. He is on you like a panther. Whilst I am very quick to pour scorn over Wenger, he has bought an absolute gem. I will say it here and now. I think he will be player of the season here this year. He is that good. I hope he stays fit and is not taken out. This boy is the best piece of business since Sol Cambell. And we know what the both have in common. Ron, I know your style of player and this boy is the real deal. This man is a 50 million pound player. He is always watching the back 3 and doing a 'tony adams' with his arms. Disciplined to make the guys push in front of the 3 to make an arc. I know there a lot of guys on here not up for going but when you are there as close as I am and see that, I can justify why I buy my ticket. I am saying this as if we can get this team rocking again, you will want to be there. One for the PR team. Keep it up as we can do it. I can't help being a soppy twat when I see something decent for a change. COYG! - Post No. 109910


markymark  22:50pm 19th Sep 2017

ToOaW - considering your shape shifting Lizard the mighty Wengo bought the Ox then substituted every time he played (according to some to save paying out Soton over the crap deal we did) played him out of position. Substituted him again when tearing into UTD and so causing Van Persie to leave , then continued to play him out of position, then ignored him as he was desperately trying to shore up Ozil and Sanches , then finally realising he was serious, first lost his temper and finally prostrated himself arse in the air when Ox told him he was off . Yes Knight Wenger for why not! - Post No. 109911


TOOAW  23:00pm 19th Sep 2017

£20 million profit. Kerching. Genius Arsene, absolute genius. - Post No. 109912


KC38  23:19pm 19th Sep 2017

Wow this site is like untold upside down! West broom to win the title even their own fans hate what they watch, The Newcastle manager to manage Arsenal, did you not see the crap he bought at Liverpool! I want Wenger out asap but the views on here are stuck very much in the 70s and 80s and I was around to see the terry neil era. - Post No. 109913


markymark  23:36pm 19th Sep 2017

ToOaW - he’s currently looking down the barrel of a 100 million loss. Genius , pure genius . KC38 - Benitez has was the Champions league, the Europa and the World club championship . Wenger has won diddly squat in Europe in comparison. Benitez actually took the job at Real , rather than just bullsit everyone for years that he was once offered it ( yes you Wengo ) - Post No. 109914


Cyril  23:42pm 19th Sep 2017

There's only one arsene wenger: We still need a world class holder. We are exposed too much as the CB can't come out if Xhaka is not present. He is never at the scene of the crime. Peter Ustinov would have trouble pinning him down. If he is going to be the Guardiola/alonso type player then we need to win the the second ball when there is an attacking press as we will tend to squeeze the defence. This means, someone needs to be strong and busy in a packed midfield. It's tricky as Wenger nailed it in his early years when he played our much loved Vieira/Petit axis. We all remember the stat that we had not been beaten in nearly three years when they both were on the pitch. So, you guessed it, they either sent one or the other off. The treacle is the centre holding/attacking positions. I have an idea, how about Kalashnikov as the holder. Now what a dream that would be!!! - Post No. 109915


mbg  1:51am 20th Sep 2017

Cyril, Kolashnikov is the real deal ? wenger has bought a real gem ? he will be the player of the season this season ? Your forgetting how many times we've said this about this player or that, you also seem to be forgeting (for some reason) who the manager is when you say it's worth and justifies your precious ticket, and what will happen to the next Sol when he gets wengers coaching philosophies ingrained into him so it'll be interesting to see if you still think the same (and no doubt have done for years ) in four months time. wenger out. - Post No. 109916


The Man From UNCLE  9:08am 20th Sep 2017

As a matter of interest, anyone going tonight? £20 a ticket according the website. I reckon about 30,000 attendance tonight maybe a bit more due to some going who don't usually get the chance. 24,000 at Wemberlee last night to see Spuds/Barnsley - ridiculous. - Post No. 109917


Yes its Ron  9:22am 20th Sep 2017

KC38 -You need to read comments in context a bit more. The WBA thing was said in context of the decline in good defending and coaches blase attitudes to it. By the way, Rafa won a Champions Lge at Liverpool and i believe he won a EUFA Cup at Valencia. Hes a top Coach and recognised as such everywhere. Cyril - Yes, he look s a good lad. Early days though and he ll have the aggression coached out of him i m sure at Arsenal. - Post No. 109918


David1  9:38am 20th Sep 2017

Good to see some fight, but in the end it's the same old shizzle because it's the same old manager. In all probability Arsenal will qualify for the CL this year. It's a strange twist that if a new manager were to achieve the same thing this year, it would look like genuine progress. Neither would he (she?), have been to blame for Sanchez leaving, or the transfer, big contracts and wage-bill problems. I'd call AW a glutton for punishment if it weren't for the fact of his £10 million salary. Must soften the blow of repeated mediocrity a little. - Post No. 109919


Bard  10:30am 20th Sep 2017

Cyril; he is a good player and might become an even better one. But one man doesnt make a team. We need a new keeper, a proper CB and proper defensive midfielder, and another top striker. As Cloughie used to say get the spine of the side right and you will become a team. Sadly our spine is as brittle and feeble as half a dozen eggs and has been for years. - Post No. 109920


Reality Cech  13:13pm 20th Sep 2017

Cyril, agree with your view of Kolasinac and he may prove to be an absolute gem but Wenger didn't but him remember? He was free. No bids & no negotiation required. Simples. If there was any kind of transfer fee involved, you can guarantee that OGL and Dickhead Law would have offered less and he wouldn't be at the Arsenal. A completely opportunistic acquisition that, albeit welcome for us, wasn't planned for. - Post No. 109921


mbg  14:16pm 20th Sep 2017

TOF really hates this competition he abort it in a heartbeat if he could even though it's one for his level and he has a realistic chance of winning, but just like the FA Cup he'd use it and be bloody glad of it to get him out of the shyte if he was in it, what a fooking hypocrite. wenger out. - Post No. 109922


mbg  21:12pm 20th Sep 2017

Bard, and remember we have a manager whose own spine is so brittle he doesn't know what one is. wenger out. - Post No. 109929


Issue #267 - Out Now!

Gooner Editorial

15th October 2017

Giving It All Away

Online Ed: Gunners too lax in possession in defeat at Watford