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Middlesbrough V Arsenal Lineups

The team's are as follows:


22 Jones
17 Xavier
08 Woodgate
12 Pogatetz
33 Taylor
27 Cattermole
07 Boateng
03 Arca
19 Downing
09 Viduka
20 Yakubu

21 Turnbull, 24 Davies, 16 Euell, 25 Morrison, 11 Christie


01 Lehmann
31 Hoyte
05 Toure
06 Senderos
22 Clichy
16 Flamini
04 Fabregas
19 Silva
07 Rosicky
25 Adebayor
14 Henry

15 Denilson, 20 Djourou, 24 Almunia, 30 Aliadiere, 32 Walcott

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Nick Simmonett  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday February 3 2007

Time: 5:04PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
HT; Snoozefest!
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03/02/2007 18:11:00

Know what you mean Roc. I was busting for a *****e after about 25. Wish I'd gone, I'm gonna be needing a *****bag for life now 8-)
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 18:17:00

It would be more fun to sit and watch a fat man try and put his shoes on!
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 18:34:00

Senderos is having a very very poor season, and Fabregas is tired. Flamini should never be deployed right. Mike Riley is a ****
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 19:31:00

Ahh! Our old mate Mike O' Reily eh? Oh well, another result with 10 men when we weren't at our best. Building blocks for next seasons assault I think! Senderos is the same in every match, excellent for most of it, but it's the one lapse of concentration that seems to cost us. If he can iron those mistakes out of his game he'd be great!
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 19:34:00

For all the Wonderful things Wenger does right hisone major flaw is that he continues to play his favourites. Flamini should be nowhere near the first team other than in the carling cup. His performance today was abysmal, he didn't help Hoyte, he done nothing worthwhile in attack & he continually gave the ball back to boro. Having said all that Boro can thank Riley for getting them a draw by awarding a penalty for a challenge that was made a minimum of 5 feet outside the area. I thought Yakubo (or whatever his name is) was supposed to be strong yet he went to floor like a big girl everytime anyone went near him & as for Mark 'Deliberate Forearm' Viduka which was seen by Riley & only given a yellow card, what a fat **** he is. I just knew Riley would cost us this game he really is one of the worst refs in this league!!
Ashburton Gooner
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03/02/2007 19:39:00

I seem to agree with u AG, Flamini has been very useful in the 4-5-1 this season but today he was very poor. The only alternative was denilson, since walcott is very low on confidence. The penalty was rather soft but the red card... typical Mike Riley.
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 19:45:00

Ashburton Gooner, Flamini just good to be in the carling cup? do you know what you're talking? dun blame the poor guy for the entire team's lacklustre performance. whatever job he is given, whether at leftback, rightback, or right midfield, he gives everything and does a very good job at it. there were others in the team today who were way worse than him. the guy reminds me so much of ray parlour, love him for his commitment to the team and who always gives 110% in every game. you're only looking at what he did wrong and not at the mistakes of others, the guy is gonna be the unsung hero of our club, and only after a few years will he get the due credit that he deserves..
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 19:58:00

and boro really defended well today, they hardly gave us space, and liverpool's draw makes this result even more disappointing, as this was a great chance to grab the third spot from them, but the lads will still keep going and i conceede the title now, but the 2nd spot is still up for grabs now..
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 20:00:00

and we're clearly missing hleb and van persie and also ljungberg to an extent. freddie can still provide us the width we lacked today and make those runs in the box and keep scoring if he gets the right service. someone needs to take over the mantle from bergkamp to provide him the killer passes for his trademark runs. and in our last year's champions league run we had a patched up defence, but i think our every player in attack was available for the knock out stages, and if we are to seriously challenge and win it this year, we need to get everyone fit soon, f*** when are all our injuries going to clear up..
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 20:05:00

lucky you're right about Flam's efforts, however today in my eyes he was at his worst self. The only one who perhaps had a worse game than him was Senderos, he looked so uncomfortable on the ball, and seemed to make decisions at the last moment or when it is too late, which put him and the rest in deep ****. The team did not click because Cesc didn't get going today and the little warrior is OBVIOUSLY tired. So is Toure. They desperately need a break. AG's observation about Flam's uselessness at the right is correct (but saying to use him in the CC is a bit harsh, too). We were pretty easy to read as all our threats came from left and center. I don't blame Flam he gives his 100%, but there's no point in putting him there. It is the same as when the Beast was made to play on the left side against the Blades (I think) and was non-productive. Same with Flam.
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 20:20:00

As far as our need of a new DB10, we should forget it. There will never ever be one as cunning and skillful as DB and moulding people into that role would be difficult. Henry seems to be playing in a completely different role nowadays and is trying to involve more people every game but there was noone to involve on the right today.
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 20:28:00

yeh but G4L who else did we have on the bench? walcott is so low on confidence, that playing him away from home today when he's not at his best would only be bad for him and affect him even more. he hsould be given more chances at home to find his feet and get his confidence level back. that left us with denilson, the lad played 120 mins on wednesday night and to expect the young kid to start today would be too much, and had he had a bad game today, it would have undone most of his goodwork from wednesday and shaken his confidence a bit too. we could have played ali and manu on the wings and go for a 4-5-1 with only henry upfront, but wenger decided to go with a 4-4-2 and he had no other alternative other than playing flamini on the left..
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03/02/2007 20:28:00

I would have preferred the 4-5-1 that would see Gilberto, Cesc, and Flam in the centre with Tomas and Ali on the wings with TH alone up front. Wenger decided to go for a 4-4-2 and made Flamini look far worse than he really is. Hoyte was exposed too many times, although he did reasonably well. Just a thought: Could Titi have played with Tomas on the left/right wing with Ade upfront? I think yes. he drifts out there anyway.
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03/02/2007 20:34:00

suddenly our attack is looking a bit thin with injuries to hleb and rvp. cesc as you rightly said was never in the game today and he was clearly missing hleb, and i even missed freddie. we need everyone in the attack to be fit, hopefully these players will be back in time for the cl and we'll have a full squad to choose from. and toure i think will get a breather when gallas will be back. wenger is reluctant to play djourou and senderos together, they aren't leaders at the back as yet, and senderos was really awful today, but i'm sure he'll bounce back, he just needs two or three solid games under his belt to get his confidence back..
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 20:35:00

he'll never play titi on the left, i'm sure he'll never even consider that option, instead manu could have played on the left and titi upfront. but she should have changed the system at halftime when it was clearly not working, get flam in the centre or sub him for ali, but my guess is arsene would have thought that the team is good enough to go and get a result no matter how ineffective some of the players were today..
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 20:42:00

i honestly thought he would rest cesc today and play flamini with gilberto, but with hleb out, we needed a bit more creativity in the midfield. we need to sign a replacement for bergkamp next season, and i know there'll never be anyone quite like him, but someone whos creative just like him and can add a bit more imagination to our game..
Report Abuse
03/02/2007 20:48:00

What was wenger thinking? Hoyte & Flamini on the right? No offense whatsoever. I think the sub for denilson should have come much earlier. We had a slight chance to win the league, but after that result, i doubt it. I don't even think we can come 2nd now, unless wenger starts playing more offensive.
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03/02/2007 21:42:00

Last season this was the kind of game we would have lost. We are starting to find the right mentality. If we had 11 v 11 then I'm sure we would have went on to dominate the last 20 against Boro and probably sneaked a 1-0. Don't be too dissapointed! We didn't lose the League today guys, we lost it away to Man City, and Fulham and West Ham. We've learned from those mistakes, a bit too late to challenge for this season, but I really do beleive that we've learnt. And our season is by no means over yet!
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03/02/2007 23:05:00

Cesc's worst game in an Arsenal shirt, dont think i've ever seen him so ineffective. Not just hanging it on him, but if we are gonna bag flamini and senderos then it needs to be said, he was useless. Adebayors first touch was shocking to, he looked like the guy from last season all over again, not the one who svcored aqt OT
Gunner down spu*s,OZ
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04/02/2007 05:39:00

That was no penalty either...he dove into the box like it was the end zone! The refs are supposed to control the flow of the game, not influence the outcome. So aggravating.
Report Abuse
04/02/2007 06:31:00

I know what u mean, riley should be demoted. I think we have the worst refs in europe. Agreed that cesc didn't play well either, definitley needs a rest. Maybe time for denilson to shine?
Report Abuse
04/02/2007 08:16:00

Fabregas is probably running on fumes at this point...let's not forget that even in a sub role midweek he wound up playing some 45 minutes due to extra time. I agree with flv though, we lost the league long ago. I'm pretty happy with this result because Borough are playing as well as we are these days, and they always get up for the big teams (particularly at home). And like flv said, this is the sort of game we would've lost a year ago, or even a few months ago. Despite going down a goal with an unwarranted penalty decision, not playing our best and having a short bench, we were still able to grind out a point. Results like this can only help us in the future. And let's not forget the Champions League, which I think can be ours this year.
Report Abuse
04/02/2007 09:24:00

luckys_10, if you don't like my opinion thats just tuff luck i'm afraid. Flamini is useless, & did you for one minute stop & think that the other lacklustre performances came about because everything broke down with Flim Flam. Cesc couldn't get any time on the ball because Flamini never made any movement at all, which meant nobody had to cover him. We need real wingers or people with ability at arsenal, Flamini is neither!! Hleb, Rosicky can play those roles. I don't care if Flamini gives 500% every match he just isn't good enough to be anywhere near our midfield area but if you want to use the effort argument then there are thousands of players that could play for arsenal, players like Sidwell (who is a damn sight better than Flamini). Finally, how many players could refuse to play in a position that they had done reasonable well in (at left back), when arsenal were in dire need of some help & still manage to get themselves selected to this day?? Unless of course they are one of Wenger's favourites!!
Ashburton Gooner
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04/02/2007 11:18:00

I agree, Cesc looked very tired. But when all is said and done, if you're a man down and a goal down with twenty minutes left, away from home, you have to be happy with a point.
Little Dutch
Report Abuse
04/02/2007 11:32:00

AG that's a bit harsh. Players like Flamini, Grimandi, Parlour are always welcome in any club. They give the club something that pacey, technical, skillful players don't and that is the hard work. Flamini should and is appreciated for this, not for his dazzling ball skills. He played in the right only because we had most of our first team out due to injury and also because Downing is in great form and destroyed Bolton a week before. I assume AW wanted to close him down a bit more but Flam could not get it together. I agree that he was useless on the right but, overall this season he has contributed a lot, and even chipped in with a few goals. And I also agree that it was one of the reasons why Cesc had a poor game (despite being tired) - Boro couldn't care less about Flamini on the right and were able to focus on our General Cesc in the midfield. Another argument to support the Flamini issue is Real Madrid. After selling Makelele, the only true hard-worker with considerably less skill than the Zizous and the Gutis of their team, they were shambles. There was noone to put in a tackle or win the ball. Flam is a great asset to Arsenal.
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04/02/2007 13:52:00

G4L, you cannot seriously compare flamini with makelele!! We have a hard worker in Gilberto who also has a lot more ability than Flamini. Denilson despite only being 18 is a much better player than Flamini & would work just as hard. If as you say he is in the team for his 'hard work ethic' then why is it he was by far the worst player on the pitch, he didn't run, he didn't tackle, he didn't track back, he had a total lack of committment, so if thats what he brings then I would rather play with 10 men!! I am not basing this on one game at boro either, this is everytime the bloke plays. He is worse than song but doesn't get anywhere near the criticism levelled at a young kid who has barely played a game for us.
Ashburton Gooner
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04/02/2007 14:37:00

the reason he looked bad is because he was on the right wing I think. He looked very good in the 4-5-1 where he did the dirty work for Cesc enabling him to roam free. It was the same with Grimandi. I am not comparing Flam to Makelele of course, I am saying that clubs need players like him. Flam did very well while Gilberto was suspended, and personally I like the lad. He even scored against the Russians:)
Report Abuse
04/02/2007 16:25:00

im sorry ash,i think your too crtitcal of flamini,he is a very usefull squad member,who can play lb rb central and even wing,not very well yesterday granted,but he is a usefull player,i do think he is better suited playing in a mid 5 role than attacking winger,but he does a good covering role and pops up with very important goals,remember chel$ki away for example,
fran merida
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04/02/2007 17:53:00

ya flamini at right wing was baffling. unlike arsene to make such tactical blunders !! but i agree with fran and G4L, i like the lad, and id like to see him continue in an arsenal jersey. he will obviously not be a replacement for gilberto in the long term, but he is a useful player at best, and we need him in our squad.
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04/02/2007 19:13:00

prits why can't he replace gilberto, flamini is still very young too, given the chance, the guy can certainly be as good as gilberto or even better. he has age on his side and he's playing with so many great players, that his game can only get better. also he has more skill and technical ability than the likes of gilberto, parlour, grimandi along with an eye for goal. just give him time, he along with cesc and denilson are going to ve our future in the centre of midfield..
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04/02/2007 20:45:00

I don't think flamini has more technical ability than the brazlian gilberto. I think the future of arsenal will be denislon cesc and fran merida. Can't wait to see the latter in a couple of yrs.
Report Abuse
04/02/2007 23:30:00

thenry,if you live in london you can watch fran play in the next round of fa youth cup@barnet underhill stadium£3 entry
fran merida
Report Abuse
05/02/2007 00:32:00

i can only assume wenger was unsure of hoytes ability to defend the right, so put flamini in front of him to take some of the defensive load - it didnt work - why did cesc look so muted? we had no attack up the right hand side, rosicky naturally drifts to the middle still, pushing cesc out right when we have possesion, cesc gets the ball, looks to flamini? hoyte? nope! i guess this is the price we pay for being in all 4 competitions, wenger must have seen in training that the obvious choices for that right wing position and CF position (adebayor should have never started) - still unbeaten in 2007 still, eboue and hleb just gained leverage in negotiating a pay raise in the summer
Report Abuse
05/02/2007 16:25:00

You only needed to post your first 10 names on the team sheet, the ref decided in the Interest of entertaining football he was going to even the teams up a little.
Report Abuse
06/02/2007 05:18:00


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