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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

I Almost Feel Sorry For 'Em

Well I did say almost.

21 games is over half a season, it's nearly half the amount of games the famous Arsenal invincibles went unbeaten, it's the key of the door, it's my old house number, it's the amount of games between Arsenal and Tottenham since Spurs last defeated their oldest rivals.

And I don't think they will get a better chance to end the hoodoo than they did tonight.

I like to call things as I see them, and Tottenham were simply the better team tonight, admittedly against a bunch of Arsenal's kids and one old fella, but the old adage goes that 'you can only beat what's infront of you', or can't in Tottenham's case.

Spurs were easily the better side, closed down better, used the ball better, showed more desire and had the better chances.

Even our goal had elements of luck, BUT, the boys kept going. Despite lackadaisical performances we somehow found a way to grind out a result.

I had planned an article telling Spurs fans to enjoy the victory, because regardless of what they may have thought, they did beat (or so I thought would happen at the time) our reserves and the result had no direct bearing on the respective clubs futures.

However this evening ends with a slight feeling of sympathy towards Spurs fans, however the majority of me is pissing myself laughing.




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The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday January 9 2008

Time: 10:06PM

Your Comments

Well at least you admit we were the better team. We should have won convincingly tonight but again we just can't beat you. Very angry if im honest even though I would have taken 1-1 before the game.
Real Deal
I've said it a thousand times Real Deal, and now you MUST admit it......God IS a Gooner.
Rocky7
allow me to join in with a smirk and a declaration that Senderos is *****.
G4L
Actually we had many shots on target in the box but somehow it didn't go in...
stukazufuss
they cant really keep a lead againnst us can they?refgardless of who we play and how we play..really feels good to be a gooner
the arsenal
Don't think playing the same team in the second leg will take us through to the final.
Gooner_Vin
Rocky I'm begining to believe you, I still can't believe we've let you off the hook again.
Topspur1
In the past I'd have said you bottled it big time TS, but I failed to see what more you could have done tonight, you were great, we were woeful.....somebody up there must be watching over us.
Rocky7
You mean god is playing football manager?
k_chelski
And God wrote a 13th commandment: 'Spurs, Thou shalt not defeat the Arsenal' And he looked upon the Emirates and saw that it was good.
Wyn Mills
That's the last time I go to bloody church, I mean that. I'm not going to church until we beat the Gooners
Topspur1
Lol @ Wyn. I'm telling you it's true. The big yin is sat up there wearing his Arsenal shirt with his big F*c* off beard painted red and white, laughing at Spurs. He gives everybody freewill until it looks like Spurs are going to win......that's when he steps in.
Rocky7
One non religious funeral for topspur1 it'll be then! :)
nikolaijns
Let's have a big hand for Theo people ;)
nikolaijns
There's no other explanation. How in the seven names of Satan did we not lose that game?
Wyn Mills
LMAO @ both Niko & Wyn!!!!
Rocky7
Rocky7 I agree, god is a gooner!
Real Deal
Wyn Mills, you didn't exactly lose, but you never got the result you wanted OR ended the hoodoo. It looks like it's never going to happen. Might as well shoot yourself.
Thing
Thing - Wyn is a gooner!!
Rocky7
We should play the girls under 12 side at spuds, that should give them a win.......... or maybe not.
Armory
I'm a gooner mate. I'm still staring at the TV wondering how we managed to mug those poor spuds yet again. The sheer law of averages should have swung the scum's way a long time ago. I was feeling generous tonight...but I guess God had other ideas.
Wyn Mills
Spuds should have won tonight - and if they were as good as they should be they would have done. Frankly they have little to blame but themselves - they weren't unlucky - just not quite good enough. They should have been at least 3-0 up at half time. Defensively we got better in the 2nd half but playing on the counter Spuds should have scored at least once more. If Defoe hadn't had the accident in the tunnel before going on the pitch when a cyclist ran over his head he might have been in better shape to score. Eduardo is a great finisher but in the last 2 games he has shown that he has a killer through ball too. But how about Walcotts goal! He flicked it up and chested it in from 12 yards!! You can't teach skill like that!!!!
Amos.
I'll admit that whilst I really want to get to the final, if the run has to end, I hope its in this competition. That said, I'm so glad they didn't beat us on our own turf. If we go out we go out, the kids have nothing more to prove, they are going to be quality players.
Rocky7
anyone here gives a toss sp*rs were the better team and unlucky not to win? I didn't think so. They were HARD DONE (without the rest) that's for sure. However, I feel they will beat the chavs this weekend.
G4L
LOL! Amos, I wondered what that stripe running across his nonce was.
Wyn Mills
It certainly wasn't an arrow on his head pointing towards the goal, judging by his finishing
darinb007
Your feelings are not quite correct Mr.G4L.
k_chelski
They always lose their nerve against Arsenal, missing at least three sitters. Full credit to Jenas- any other Spur would have fired wide in that situation.
elbondo
I thought that somebody had crimped off a Bungles finger on his head!
flv
That is typical of you Gooners; firstly you sabotage the Victoria line so our fans couldn't get to the ground. Then you run Defoe over with a bike so he would disorientated and miss a sitter. As if it isn't bad enough that god is a Gooner
Topspur1
What is crystal clear from tonight is that with Senderos filling in while Toure is away we're in for a heart stopping January.
Wyn Mills
Wenger seems to have seen Djourou as the weakness rather than Senderos. Hoyte did a better job in the 2nd half so maybe he was right. The Spuds were running straight through us in the 1st and Diaby, Denilson and Walcott were letting runners go far too easily.
Amos.
Despite being happy for not losing after playing very bad, the match gave a clear message of what the squad lacks, which could have given us a much better performances, and that is a left winger and a quality center back, (I hope something is done before the transfer window close). I thought if Lansbury was playing today he would have shined instead of the helpless Denilson, on the other hand Hoyote and Sagna were lions at the back.
Arsenal4Ever
Just got home from work so I missed the game. Was checking my phone every five mins and was delighted we equalised. When we were trailing I was just telling myself, Law of averages, they HAVE to beat us some time and when I learnt we had drawn, it was sweet. Did we play badly then or did they play well?
Keplaz
exactly arsenal4ever i thought hoyte and sanga had a good game and that denilson is a ******** pratt he does he know how to play football, cant pass or take freekicks and he is not very creative. intresting point in lansbury though i think he played for the reserves a few days ago so he coudnt play also did you notice randall toucehs when he cameon the were quite slick (for 2 minutes he had on the pitch) if i do say so my self
nr790
Geee..rrard, lay off Denilson.You lot just couldn't handle Berbatov, once spudhan scored it crushed your team's morale.Arsenal was the better team at the start.
k_chelski
Everything agreed. Now my 2 questions are: (1) How can we lose to Spurs, maybe easier at WHL? (2) How's Arsene going to fix the central defence with Kolo gone? And since God's a (proven) Gooner now, I'll keep praying to Him that Gallas stays healthy and fit and motivated and raring to go and scoring important goals in big games and so on...
Louisa
I think ill be paying the all mighty one avisit. This can't go on!
Real Deal
I think you're being a tad harsh on Denilson. nr790. He does play well for us in the CC and hi performance against Sp*rs last year proves that. He's still young He also played well against Burnley so I don't think you should be slating him over a performance or two.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
Yeah I agree with WYBI, ny790's a bit harsh on Denilson. Although my web streaming was bad and I missed some parts of the game, he wasn't all that bad. He's one of the reasons why we came back at 2-0 down at WHL last year and won the home tie to get to the final later. This kid has technical ability, but maybe his lack of games means he's really inconsistent. The same can be said about Traore and Diaby. Let's give the kids the benefit of the doubt.
Louisa
Diaby is frustrating. He is a ball hog. He doesn't pass unless he absolutely has to. Tries to take the whole team on. He needs to learn when to release the ball and team work and he'll be a very good player.
Keplaz
Well the worst thing about the game is that Djourou, Senderos and again RVP are injured. If these injuries are bad we should buy a CB.
AB_Arsenal
Off topic (sorry I'm the off-topic queen) but interesting to see some German reports that say Mad Jens is officially off: http://www.goal.com/en/Articolo.aspx?ContenutoId=541186
Louisa
"Auf Wiedersehen und dankt!"
Louisa
Louisa, here is something to answer your question.. Speaking after tonight's Carling Cup draw with Tottenham, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger strongly denied that any agreement had been reached for the transfer of the veteran. 'It's not true,' Wenger said regarding the reports from Germany. 'Not for Jens and not for us. 'I deny that Jens has agreed personal terms with Dortmund and I deny that we have an agreement with Dortmund.'
CoastarianGooner
Yeah I've just read that piece too. So the answer is "not YET" then. And speaking of keepers, if some of you guys might have (almost) felt sorry for Spurs, did you also feel for Robbo then? I did, kind of.
Louisa
About the new injuries, is there official news on it? If its true, we have Hoyte like today to deputise and Gallas. Now you all see the reason why AW really is keen to keep Hoyte, he stabilized the defence today.
CoastarianGooner
I thought Senderos played okay, certainly better than Djourou. Apparently Djourou's groin injury has been with him since his loan spell but I'm sure he'd have finished the game if he had been playing better. None of the injuries are serious. Have to agree with Kep about Diaby- but maybe that's his role, to keep possession while everybody else gets into position?
elbondo
Yeah AW has said that Djourou, Senderos and RvP suffered injuries, but didn't mention Theo who didn't look too good either. http://www.arsenal.com/article.asp?thisNav=News&article=486123&lid=NewsHeadline&Title=Ars%26egrave;ne+Wenger:+%27We+had+resilience+and+didn%27t+give+in%27
Louisa
If it's true, we buy/loan a CB. No two ways about it. I didn't get to watch the match but you know Sp*rs played well when a Gooner admits they did. Coming back to the injuries, if its long term we have to get someone albeit on a short term deal.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
The best pass of the game on our side was Eduardo's that led to the goal - may have fluked in, but the pass was beautiful. Anyway I'm relieved this game's out of the way, and that the pressure is now all on the Spuds... we haven't got anything to lose which will hopefully make our guys a bit calmer so they can play better in a fortnight! Does anyone know what happens if it ends goal-less at WHL? is it extra time or do the away goals count?
Andy-bayor
Andy-bayor, I think we don't apply the away goals rule in CC. Last year we first drew at WHL 2-2, then it was 1-1 on 90 mins at home, remember? It still went into extra time despite our 2 away goals versus their 1.
Louisa
WYBI, they did play well and we didn't, simple as that. In your words: would you believe it?!
Louisa
I didn't get to watch the game here. Bloody hell, due to time difference the match started at 1.30AM! Did they play well? I believe so because they gave us one hell of a fight in the League
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
The away goals rule only applies after extra time has been played. So if its 0-0 on the night after 90 minutes we play extra time and if it stays that way they win. If it's still all square on away goals after extra time (i.e 1-1) then it goes to penalties.
Amos.
Thanks Amos, good to know, cos we might come to that scenario, it's always tight with Spurs.
Louisa
Memory like a sieve... thanks Louisa!
Andy-bayor
Nah Andy-bayor, it's Amos who has sieve-like memory! So basically we're hoping for a win at WHL. A 0-0 draw (not likely given the firepower of both sides, well, and weak defence - if we keep playing the kids in back four, depending on injuries now) is not enough. A 1-1 draw will send us into extra time, in which we might have a slight advantage of having young legs, but it's hard to tell. If we win, of course we go through. If we draw 2-2 at the end, we go through too, by applying the away goal rule at the end of the extra time. That's what Rocky touched on in the other article actually.
Louisa
With 4 players coming off injured, I'm glad the next game is Birmingham. Not to say it's an easy ride though - they've seen a bit of improvement working with McLeish. If Djourou and Senderos stay out, we may need Hoyte in CB again. RvP and Theo can be replaced - well like we've been doing without them before these few weeks really. The worst-case scenario of long-term injury to the CB's, we might need to loan someone in the short term.
Louisa
With Johan and Phil injured that means that Gilberto and Hoyte would have more chances to show themselves :D
stukazufuss
Louisa- Any idea how long the injuries are? We're able to replace Walcott because Eboue was there. Now he's off. Anyone else injured? Hleb? Cesc? Or is it only Senderos, Djourou, Walcott and RvP?
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
That's the thing - we don't know yet, according to those Arsene quotes on arsenal.com. They should check them tomorrow again and hopefully we'll know soon. Theo's replaceable - by Hleb in RM in a 4-4-2. Cesc and Hleb didn't play. Team was: Fabianski, Traore, Senderos, Djourou (replaced by Hoyte in 2nd half), Hoyte (replaced by Sagna), Diaby, Denilson, Gilberto, Walcott, RvP (Eduardo) and Bendtner. Only RvP and Sagna were first-teammers really. But Senderos/Djourou is now too with Kolo away. That's what I'm worried about. Of course Hoyte and Gilberto could do a job in CB for a game or two. Hope so.
Louisa
But Arsene in the post-match interview only mentioned Djourou, Senderos and RvP, but not Walcott who walked off towards the end, maybe he's fine, I don't know. The most frustrating is RvP's! I had been waiting and waiting for him to come back, in fact quite surprised he made it tonight, as Arsene's been saying Birmingham or soon after, but not before. Arsene wouldn't have rushed him back. But we could have started Eduardo instead of him to be honest. Anyway, we'll know more soon I hope.
Louisa
I know we don't desperately want to win CC. But I think we still have a good chance to get a win at WHL to go through. We have Birmingham home, Fulham away (in which maybe only 2-3 CC players will be involved anyway), then CC 2nd leg on 22 Jan. They have to play 1 more game. Within 11 days they'll have Chelsea away, Reading away in FAC, Sunderland home, then us home in CC - largely with 1st team that is. If our kids can get back to their pre-Spurs CC form, they should have a good chance at WHL. Do you think so, or is it my usual optimism talking again?
Louisa
Senderos and Gilberto were terrible tonight. We lacked someone in midfield to control the tempo of the game. I think Arsene should re-think Diarra's situation as i believe its time for Bert to make way. And we definently need a CB in the Jan window. p.s Completely off topic bit does anyone know about Carlos Vela? It was said he was coming back in January but im yet to hear anything more
Aussie Gooner
I have defended Senderos even as recently as the Burnley game but can do so no longer, it's like he's starring in a pop video where everyone else is moving round him at double speed, to let Diarra go whilst keeping Senderos would be an outraaaage, lets see a little Wenger wheelin and dealin, ship out ponderos please Arsene!
nikolaijns
LMAO nikolaijns...Aussie Gooner, Carlos Vela will only join us next season..Senderos needs Gallas around him to be alert but to be fair, Djourou's performance didn't help Senderos too, all in all Senderos didn't have the worst game but an average one with one nice tackle that could have caused a goal.
CoastarianGooner
Well with all these new injuries it would be nice to hold onto Diarra....or at least buy a new CB.
AB_Arsenal
funny article check it out http://bleacherreport.com/articles/6071-European_Football-Arsenal-FC_Barcelona-J_Accuse_Thierry_Henry_Lays_Claim_to_Scowling_Celebration-090108
young-Gunner
I think we were awful last night.. Gilberto, Fabianski, Djourou, Senderos were totally out of it. Gilberto's passing was the worst I've ever seen. He kept giving the ball away.. and so did Arsenal at most times.I always maintained that we need to get a CB because, quite frankly Senderos is not upto scratch.. and Djourou showed last night that he was lost on the pitch at times.. We should've lost 3-0 and we've drawn 1-1.. and we're out of jail.. now we should go to White Hart Lane with Ade up top and we'll be fine.
arsenalrulz4ever
We have to score 2 goals at WHL and I think we'll get through.. the away goals rule applies after 120 mins in the CL.
arsenalrulz4ever
Spurs were better in every department, played better football and how we've come out with a draw I'll never know. I fear our luck has well and truly run its course in this fixture, I was almost embarrassed to celebrate Theo's very lucky goal. This is the first time Tottenham have played us without any fear for a while now. Gilberto was woeful and Diaby has put in two incredibly lazy displays now. This guy is supposed to be hungry for the first team, but he should spend the next couple of weeks playing in front of 20 people at Underhill, because he doesn't want it enough.
Little Dutch
LD, Spuds didn't fear us because they knew our defence was light and they had their top strikers against us with Loads of experience from different cup games (reffering to age and number of games under their belts). On top of that, we didn't tear their defence apart because our midfield was poor no link up with the strikers.
CoastarianGooner
LD, its too easy to criticise Diaby, but the fact remains he never gets to play in his real position (CM) & thats the position where he has played his best games. He does tend to hold onto the ball too long, but in his defence nobody was making moves around him so he could pass & he hasn't had a run of games at all...........As for the transfer window, Wenger isn't going to sign anyone. We know the left side is weak at present but Vela will be a first team player next season & will obviously be Rosicky's understudy. The defence is a worry & I'm not sure whats happened to Nordveit (as he was supposed to play cc games this season), but I honestly can't see Arsene signing any defenders because he has faith in Senderos (probably one of the worst defenders we have ever had, even more so than Cygan). The positive from the match is that the youngsters will learn from games like that, going out & destroying a team teaches them nothing, but playing a team thats finished 5th for two seasons running & still managing to get a result will really bring them on no end.
Ashburton Gooner
I feel good because we will sell Gilberto. The only problemn is that we will be left with only Cesc, Flamini (the PARTNERSHIP!!!!!!), Denilson and Diaby. That is not enough especially when two of them look rud (yes, I said "rud" not a mistake) alongside Cesc.
Goofle
I just hope that Diaby learns to tackle and has more discipline because he could be a great defensive midfielder.
Goofle
I also want to know why Arsene never gives Gibbs a chance. He is a natural to the left wing & would surely be a better option than Diaby on that side, he is also more direct & would put in crosses for Bendtner & Eduardo. He caused Inter no end of problems so there's no reason he couldn't do the same to spurs.
Ashburton Gooner
Senderos reminds me of Cygan...and not only because of the gormless expression. He has that habit of planting his feet which means he turns slower than an oil tanker. He is no way fast enough to deal with the faster premiership attacks and his clearances always leave you with your heart in your mouth. He will cost us games and Wenger must know it. Gilberto left some big holes in front of defence last night and his passing is simply awful. Diarra would have done a better job there. Its just a pity he's blotted his copybook with the manager. I agree about Diaby being a frustrating player who finds it hard to release the ball.
Wyn Mills
Though his passing was a bit off at times last night Gilberto was still the best of our midfielders by some distance yesterday. He gets himself into space well and gives the others a pass to make. Unfortunately Diaby, Denilson and Walcott were all having great difficulty retaining possession and wasted possession much more than Gilberto did. They did little to create space for themselves or for their midfield partners. It was a good break forward by Gilberto to feed Eduardo that set up our goal. We do lose tempo when Gilberto plays but others were much more at fault than he was last night. We know that they are all capable of playing well but they don't play consistently so consistency will be lacking at times. That is always going to be the problem with young players and that is really what the CC is all about for us. Not beating the Spuds this year or Chelsea in last years final but giving the kids experience through a competition that doesn't really matter. Hopefully they will have got something from this game - and without taking too much damage.
Amos.
Think th yids will finally break their duck and beat you on the return leg!
MFC67
I understand about Diaby being out of position, but he was plain lazy. The only time he broke a sweat was to try and kick Jenas. I have to disagree slightly about Gilberto, Malbranque, Lennon, Berba and Keane were all dropping off and dictating play and I didn't see Gilberto picking up at all. Bendtner and Hoyte tried, that's pretty much all I can say. Hopefully they'll learn from this. There's a proverb that says a smooth sea never made for a skilled mariner.
Little Dutch
They will have a better chance to beat us, and that's Tuesday week, which i'm nervous about already.
AFC85Lew
Only Half Time And Arse Will Win The Replay..!
horseworrier
The Spurs midfield as a unit performed better than ours. Gilberto didn't play particularly well but if he had played twice as well as he did it wouldn't have made up for the lack of performance from Diaby, Denilson and Walcott. They were the ones letting the runners go and losing possession. As the senior player we might look to Gilberto to dictate play but in all honesty that has never been his game - it's not for nothing that he was described as 'invisible'. Hence Flamini's drive giving us a bit more this season. Had we got more from the other midfield 3, especially Diaby and Walcott, then I think that Gilberto's performance might just have passed muster. But then we would be expecting young players learning their craft in what is for us a reserve competition to be performing like hardened veterans and thats not what these games are about for us.
Amos.
Agree with LD, Diaby was lazy as **** last night. Then when there was half a chance he could pull something off he would linger over the ball for too long and the chance would be wasted. Fairplay to the spuds, they were the better team last night but they choked. On thie showing though I don't think the kids have it in them to turn them over at S**te Hart Lane.
Moorish
The midfield was poor and the back four were SHOCKING - Senderos used to have potential, didn't he? He used to look like he would be a good player! He was awful last night - again.
Moorish
I'm not worried about the return game at all. If we lose then so be it, I don't really think any gooner has the cc top of their priority list & whilst it would be great to see the kids win the trophy at wembley I have no doubt they will come back & go for it again next year............LD, I said several months after Diaby joined us that there was a problem with his fitness & that still appears the case. He has never been a 90 minute player & I do understand he comes across as lazy, but in reality there wasn't enough movement or enough options last night when he did get the ball. I would like to see him play CM with Diarra in the return game (unlikely as Diarra will probably have left by then) & just see how he performs. If he puts in another lazy performance then I'd agree with you completely, but I do think he deserves a chance. After all Flamini refused to play at left back & he got given his wish!!
Ashburton Gooner
How can a professional footballer (at Arsenal) not be a 90minute player?
AFC85Lew
AFC85Lew, he just isn't a 90 minute player. His stamina seems to go, maybe there is something more to it but I'm not a doctor!!
Ashburton Gooner
I said on our site yesterday that we would walk all over your midfield and that is exactly what happened. Walnut was terrible all game and was very lucky lee tackled him as he never had himself properly set for the shot. Diaby is possibly the worst player ive witnessed in the wenger era, he constantly gives away possesion and never tries to win it back(so much for LD's article at the start of the season where he predicted great things from this guy) but worst of all your manager has frozen out Diarra when he is clearly a much better player than both Gilberto and Denilson. Now onto our players - King was back to his best we look really solid with him at the helm, the partnership of o'hara and Jenas looks like it has balance which is something we have been missing in this department since Carrick left, Berbatov and Keane is the best partnership in the premier league and they showed it yet again last night, the movement and understanding between these two is great to watch. If Ramos can get a quality keeper(Artur Boruc) Defender(Dunne) and Midfielder (Diarra) then we will be a very good team.
sport
Yes - King looked solid at the back up until he let Walcott get in behind him to score.
Amos.
Sport, you do realise that was our back-up players & youngsters don't you?? If Berbatov & Keane are the best partnership in the premier league then surely spurs should be outscoring every team they play?? Clearly they aren't!!
Ashburton Gooner
We are joint top scorers in the league along with yourselves, Berbatov and Keane is a great partnership and deep down you mugs know it!!!
sport
Berbatov and Keane only looked a great partnership because they were playing against micky mouse center backs who dont anticipate a thing!!! Berbatov and Keane were allowed to drop of the Center backs and pick up the ball freely all night, put these two against first class defenders and this would not happen!! Even hoyte looked like our best central defender when he actually won a few headers against berbatov in the 2nd half! This is a great partnership that still didnt manage a goal between them last night??? behave.
zinedine_cygan
Ha ha, love it! we played as badly as i've ever seen us play and they still couldn't get a result! I went to Vital Suprs and told them i now know how they feel celebrating a draw as if it was a win!
Cesky
I actually thought Sendy played well and Djourou had an absolute mare. He needs to shape up quickly, otherwise can Mr Wenger please buy us a new CB now we have the chance and the cash to spare,
Cesky
Berbatov and Keane are very good forwards but not great - Berbatov wants away and I am not sure that Ramos rates Keanes all round play quite as highly as you do. So next seasons gonna be the one for Spuds then - eh sport? Has a familiar ring to it that does.
Amos.
Berbatov & Keane are far from a great partnership. Infact after your last match several comments were posted on the vital spurs site saying that Keane should be dropped for Defoe, so it doesn't seem your fellow spuds agree with you. Anyhow, enjoy Berbatov's football while you can, after all he'll be off to Man Utd in the summer!!
Ashburton Gooner
just like to say how much i appreciated theo's celebration in front of the spuds...classic!
zinedine_cygan
Sport I clearly remember you guys wanting Denilson when he was linked to you a while back? All of a sudden he's terrible? I disagree. He's only 19 and still learning his trade. I hope Wenger sticks to his principles and plays the youngsters. I would be a certainly boost confidence that the manager has faith in them even when their back's are against the wall. I just hope the kids know how we are disappointed and put a wonderful performance at WHL. They're are more than capable of doing a good job and they'll want to prove many of us wrong. I want to eat some humble pie!
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
Fair enough we had an off-day, but this game only makes it clearer that we should be hanging onto Diarra. He is not a Flamini but not a Fabregas, and seems to be exactly halfway between the two. Thinking of a direct Cesc replacement, I honestly believe that however unlikely, he is the closest we have and even edges out Denilson.
Andy-bayor
I have no clue what his ******** problem is to stay! I never thought he would be needed to be honest. I'm sure Wenger will want him to stay.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
We will and should stick with the kids for the second leg, the manager trusts them and so do I. We got away with it last night, but they were good enough to beat Blackburn away and Newcastle, so they are perfectly capable of beating Tottenham. Even if they don't, the learning curve for them will be invaluable.
Little Dutch
I agree we should stick with the kids for the second leg. Surely it wont be as bad as yesterday
number14
Wouldyoubelieveit i would still take Denilson but id much prefer Diarra as he is much further developed as a player. If wenger plays the same team that started yesterday i can see us winning by quite a margin at the lane.
sport
I have a few fears for this team on the long run tho....I dont know if i'm the only one who feels this way but i dont think Walcott will ever make the grade at Arsenal - he just doesnt seem to have it. And one more thing - if we are to win the league...i think we will need a good defender...i think we will miss Kolo...and hey even when he comes back, he or Gallas could get injured
number14
Continue to show complete disregard for the opposition. Play the kids again, they'll be good enough for that lot!
FatOldDave
Its not exactly disregard. Arsene sticks with his principles. And hey how are you supposed to develop a team. Maybe we should start buying talent like every one else i guess
number14
Sport- Why do you think the same team will play the same way? Surely they'll be given a talking to by Arsene and they will improve. They will want to prove to all Arsenal fans that they can do a job. What better way to prove to us, Wenger and themselves that they're the future of this club than by beating one of our nearest rivals? I wont be surprised if they put in one heck of a performance in two weeks. They can still beat you mind you especially when you're team have a history of throwing away leads. You're speaking to prematurely.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
"Maybe we should start buying talent like every one else i guess" number 14 please! How would that make us any different from rest of the top teams? It's finding unknown talented world-beaters at knock down prices that makes us special. It's what makes Arsene special.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
unreal, i thought last tonight would of been spuddies first win against us, even if a reserve team, but as i pointed out in the second half, we score most of our goals 4th quarter of the game and spurs concede most of their goals second half, it had draw all over it ! the difference ladies and gents is we don't care if we get to the final where for most spurs fans its silverware and very important !
PUREGOLD
sport, what you meant to say was "if us Spurs don't play as well as we did last night, we will surely get the living daylights kicked out of us"...right? For us gooners it would be almost desperate and cowardly to play anything but the same squad at WHL! Our kids can do 'em at the lane!
Andy-bayor
Wouldyoubeliveit?! the midfield that wenger played is poor. Diaby is crap he cant tackle or pass and gives away the ball, walnut is the exact same. Gilberto is like clumsy pensioner who wishes he was somewhere else and denilson is still abit raw for this level. Wenger has shot himself in the foot by letting Diarra go as neither gilberto or denilson could cover for cesc or flamini. We will win easy at the lane 3-1
sport
Therein lies the point sport. Diarra has to be a more developed player than Denilson as he is 3 years older. But was Diarra as good as Denilson 3 years ago and will Denilson be better in 3 years time? Our investment in the CC is for the future of our club - yours is a desperate craving for a trophy of any kind.
Amos.
PG, I read that as "for most Spurs fans its silverware and therefore impotent"!
Andy-bayor
The midfield that Wenger played is inconsistent not poor. Diaby is better than yesterdays performance which is why he has 3 full international caps. Jenas has hardly been a model of consistency has he? Lennon is and was yesterday as one dimensional and limited as he has always been. O'Hara played well for you but can his form be maintained once the opposition get to know him better. If we play as badly as we did yesterday you should win but if you don't play better than you did and we do then then maybe the disappointment continues. Either way it matters a lot more to you than it does to us knowing that even if you do get to the final either of Chelsea or Everton will take the competition more seriously than we do.
Amos.
I've just written up a whole match report, but for some reason it hasn't published. Needless to say I have neither the time, nor the inclination to do it again. Most of what I made of the game is on the forum anyway.
Little Dutch
Don't forget Spurs have to win this competition to get back into europe next season. They will be out in the FA cup to either Reading or if not then certainly to Man Utd, they won't be getting there through the league & they have no chance in the UEFA cup with teams like Bayern Munich still being in it (even if they aren't overly fussed by it). The runners up in the league cup don't qualify even if it is won by a team that will qualify for europe through the league themselves eg Everton or Chelski, so spurs desperately need to win it.
Ashburton Gooner
"We will win easy at the lane 3-1" Sport- Haven't your past experiences taught you anything? You have been saying this for about 8-9 years and not once have you beaten us. You should think twice about making such predictions buddy. It could make you look like muppet. For all you know this could have been a one of performance from either of us. Never count us out particularly against the $hit defenders you have.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
Was a bit surprsied that it wasn't one of your high income French mercs that scored, but Theo.
Blue is the colour
I agree with number14, Walcott just isn't showing any promise.. whenever he picks it up he doesn't know what to do. He has been lucky getting thru a lot of challenges to appear like he's got skill but its not there. He's had a lot more appearances than most players and wasn't he supposed to be a free kick taker as well? Reckon Wenger is hating the fact that we drew spurs this round. Last year it didnt matter so much but now we're top of the league its an extra hassle to worry about as there's a certain obligation to the fans to beat the spuds.
MeetTheGunners
At 18 years old Walcott can only show promise. At least wait until his 19th birthday before you make up your mind that he will never make the grade. We laud youngsters like Gibbs, Lansbury, Merida, Barazite until they play a few first team games and if they aren't playing like world beaters within a few appearances we write them off. Unreasonable expectations or what?
Amos.
What about the "Theo is finally showing promise" comments before he got injured? The point is he is full of potential and sometimes he plays well sometimes he doesn't. But that's expected as he still young and raw. Lets not have two faces here shall we?
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
Little dutch, if you are still in admin, use the backspace, you should be able to retrieve the report.
The Fear
Agree with you guys... we can't have it both ways - bringing players up means you have to go through the mixture of pleasure and pain when you watch them grow. Amos is right that we need to give people time. Theo is NOT the finished article and we shouldn't expect him to be. Arsene puts him on show to let him learn and because he expects great things from him in future.
Andy-bayor
We have lost only 2 games this season (I think). I really do feel we're overreacting to the draw. In spite of the poor performance, we did come away with a draw. I'm pretty sure if AW keeps the team, they'll be high on confidence and surely they'll shell out a good performance. Thats all I want. A good performance. Doesn't matter if we win/lose. Just want to see the youngsters making a statement that they're more than capable of filling into first teamers' boots.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
AGree completely that we need to give the youth time, but what about us fans, the soul of the Arsenal - i appreciate that this is a kiddies competition for Arsene to allow their development, but in echoing the sentiment that it was a shame to draw the spuddies, i don't want to lose against them at all. Ever. Not if we can avoid it, and for that reason would play a slightly stronger team. I personally think the CC competition should overhaul the subs rules to allow 5 or 6 subs to be used.
Cesky
Cesky, why increase the number of subs?
CoastarianGooner
Because for the secopnd half of the game, i was bricking it at the thought of having only sub left when the first half was so poor, and also at the inexperience of the subs that we had given that we were a goal down and needed some experience and some gallas fire or cesc or hleb creativity in the midfield. I would like the option of the old heads in that situation with the youngsters also on the bench in case we are doing ok and can afford to play them - i basically want to have my cake and eat it Coastarian!
Cesky
I meant....only one sub...
Cesky
we will beat you at the lane..it will go into extra time and defoe will score the winning goal.then your lot can start telling that we never defeated you in normal time and crap..
Spurs_fan_from_india
we will beat you at the lane..it will go into extra time and defoe will score the winning goal..and then you will start saying that spurs havent beaten arsenal in normal time since 1999 and crap..
Spurs_fan_from_india
Spurs_fan_from_india, even if you win we have more important things on our mind. The Premiership for one. Besides, only losing 1 in 21 isnt all that bad at all is it now?
ArsenalRob
'Was a bit surprsied that it wasn't one of your high income French mercs that scored, but Theo." BITC(H), if any players who are mercs, it's your money-hungry players at chelski, you turd.
BMF
I'm optimistic our guys will get through by winning at WHL for a few reasons: (1) they'll play 3 games (no less than Chelsea away, Reading away (FA Cup replay, another goal feast?) and Sunderland home), while we have 2 only (Birminhamg home, Fulham away); (2) their first-teamers will get tired, while only about 3 of Arsenal players who'll play in the 2nd leg will have appeared in the 2 games in between; (3) the fringe players will learn from this experience; (4) we actually have impressive record in away CC games - Everton, Liverpool and Spurs last year, Blackburn this; (5) it's not that the kids lack talent or technical ability, their bad performance was down to inconsistency. The only worry I have is the multiple injuries, especially when Djourou's "definitely out for Birmingham" as reported on arsenal.com.
Louisa
i agree with you on that one louisa,spuds will have over stretched themselves,esp.if they have a hard f.a cup game
fran merida
If Ramos has any brains he will play his kids against Reading. Whats the point in them going through just to get knocked out by Man Utd in the next round (infact its better for them to lose to reading because otherwise they will get the usual stick about losing to a top four team again). The CC is their only realistic chance so he may as well put all his eggs into the one basket, knowing full well its the fourth priority for Arsenal & Wenger really isn't bothered. I still think Chelski will win the cup anyway.
Ashburton Gooner
yeah AG, we're alcoholic.
k_chelski
Your kids ... ? In your team, all bar Hoyte and Traore are full internationals for their respective nations. Cerny, Dawson, Malbranque, and O'Hara have yet to represent their national side. King has only just recovered from long term injury and is not match fit. ..... it was the worst game you've played in a long time and comes only recently after you sneaked a win with a full strength side against our injury hit team, needing Tainio to turn out a la Flamini at full back. It will be interesting to see who Wenger selects for WHL, and whether it makes any difference. At least the result has made the departure of Defoe more likely - loved the comment about his silly hairstyle if you can dignify its stupidity with such a description.
EnglishSpur
BMF, I believe if you get the AMG report for your club you will find that your wage bill for last year was 2nd only to Chelski (obviously, I never include them anyway) at 89.7m almost 5m more than Man utd. Spur's annual wage bill was 40.7m. So although the transfer fee's for your young players are minimal, you make up for it in terms of wages and signing on fee's. By the way, Im not having a dig at you goons, It's a clever (less risky) way of doing business, but don't think your "special kids" come cheap, The money is the main reason many of them come to your club, rather than stay where they were developed.
Guyver
Our first team players earn a hell of a lot more than Spurs first team players & thats why our wage bill is higher. However the wage bill has come down considerable since we got rid of Henry, Ljungberg & Co, which will show in the next set of accounts. Spurs wage bill on the other hand will just keep going upwards. Although to be fair spurs have done well to keep a strict wage structure in place, through this boom period. You're quite right though, the kids aren't cheap (in terms of salary), but players at 17-18 years old have agents that know their true worth (in this market place) & as such they demand high wages or they go elsewhere, the upside is that our academy is now really producing youngsters & they won't command the same wages as an in demand 18 year old foreigner would. In the next 3-5 years Arsenal will only sign the best foreign youngsters because we will be producing our own quality through the academy.
Ashburton Gooner
Yes, our kids English Spur. The average age of the 16 selected on Wednesday was 19.3. The fact that so many are full internationals speaks of their quality, but it doesn't make them old or experienced. It's also tribute to how well they have been developed at Arsenal and how well they have acquitted themselves. The majority of Spurs fans seem to be arguing that our Carling Cup side isn't young because it's so good! Good it may be, but still very junior.
Little Dutch
Ashburton Gooner, Your right, Henry ect have left but you have signed a couple of players. I don't follow your club closely enough to know wether you have put some of your young successful players on improved long term contracts but that would also have an impact. Man Utd have bought in quite a few players, so I expect their wage bill has also seen a substantial rise. "we will be producing our own quality through the academy" about time, you have the set up and coaching staff at the moment, it would benefit your (Arsenals) finance and possibly the England national team. Stop stealing!
Guyver
And Ledley King is as good as Toure imo, if im allowed to have one.
Guyver
I see nothing at all wrong with paying high wages if that is what it takes to attract the best young talent. It certainly makes more sense than playing inflated transfer fees, agents commission et c. I don't expect our wage bill to drop substantially if at all in the next accounts. New contracts for Cesc, Toure and others will all impact on that. Our whole financial plan with the new stadium, TV channel, international brand development is all designed to ensure we can continue to buy in good young talent as well as developing our own. What we won't do is blow a quarter of our annual wage bill with 21m on SWP or even 16m on Bent. Our players will usually show a profit when we move them on. That's just good resource management.
Amos.
Guyver, of course you are allowed an opinion, has anyone said otherwise? However you did just ruin your post by stating Arsenal should 'Stop Stealing'. Did Spurs not steal Lennon, Tarrabat (sorry can't spell his name for the life of me) & Boateng etc & no the transfer fees mean nothing (Lennon was about a million) to a club that were going bust. Cesc is one of the best players in the premier league now but Barca continue to maintain that he wouldn't even be in their 'B' team if he was still there, so tell me why Arsenal or any other club for that matter shouldn't give those sort of players a chance?? Wenger has always had a long term plan to start our academy from scratch & he has now achieved it, we can finally bring through ENGLISH players (no offence to the other home nations but playing Scottish, Welsh or Irish kids doesn't help the England team). As for our youngsters having improved terms, of course thats true, but any player that has a good season at any club seems to get an improved contract so its no different for players at Arsenal.
Ashburton Gooner
AG How did we steal Lennon, taraabt ect? We didnt use any loop holes to buy any of our players. I admit Leeds were not in great position to negotiate but whose fault was that? Barca went through the process of developing Fabregas through their academy, but due to his age were unable to put him on a contract legally. So Wenger jumps in and STEALS him. Wether he would have had the chance at Barca or not is irrelevant, there was no transfer fee for the time Barca invested in him. Then to make things worse you do it again at the same club with Fran Merida. You have also been heavily linked with the talented Bojan Krkic, a 16 year old kid at the SAME club. You have to feel sorry for Barca, legaly there is nothing they can do about it but imo its not a fair way of doing business. If the shoe was on the other foot what would you call it. Problem is you don't have a player worth the effort. If you did Wenger wouldnt need to use these tactics and would develop his own.
Guyver
We didnt steal any of the players you listed. Prices were agreed between clubs involved and transfer fees were payed, surley you can understand the difference.
Guyver
Guyver, you are wrong again!! Regardless of a transfer fee those youngsters have been developed by another club so based on your argument, why shouldn't that club have the benefit of that player before they move off?? After all spurs come in & steal them, then stick them in the reserves. We gave Barca compensation for Fabregas & it was more than Spurs paid to Leeds for Lennon. Merida was Barca's f*** up, Fran's parents signed an agreement with Barca but their moronic president didn't feel the need to sign it himself (or maybe he thought that way he could get out the contract if they felt they didn't need Merida). We paid money for Flamini & overall we paid money for pretty much every other player you care to mention. Nordtveit & Sunu who came in the summer we paid a few million for, so I still don't get your point. If Spurs don't steal players because they pay transfer fees, then why do Arsenal steal when they give an equal or higher amount of compensation?
Ashburton Gooner
Arsenal are now developing our own talent, but like any club when Wenger arrived we didn't have any quality youngsters & he has had to change all that. That sort of development doesn't happen overnight & its why the first lot of players who have been at arsenal from a very early age are now coming through. I don't see that happening at Spurs, infact it seems spurs are intent on finding foreign youngsters now so your argument is actually becoming redundant. Arsenal are developing quality english players & spurs are buying foreigners!!
Ashburton Gooner
Anyway before you come back with any tiresome arguments cast your mind back to 2001 & a certain Rohan Ricketts who was offered a pro contract at Arsenal, I wonder who came in & stole him?? Did Arsenal whine & moan about it? No & they didn't go for compensation either, because if a player chooses to leave at whatever age & if they don't have a contract, then Arsene doesn't spend his life crying about it!!
Ashburton Gooner
If a club agree's to sell their player that is not stealing! Yes Leeds developed Lennon but they wanted/needed to sell him. That was their choice, they could have kept him if they wanted...but they didnt. Barca had no choice with Fab and admittedly messed up with Merida. Barca were NOT compensated, FACT and if you can prove otherwise please show the evidence. The only people who recieved money from that deal was Fab and his parents. If you sign a player from a club and both parties agree on the transfer fee, then there is nothing wrong with that transaction. You really don't seem to understand where im coming from and need to stop making irrelevant comparison. Rohan Ricketts was 19, if you REALLY wanted him you could have kept him. You had the option, unlike the Barca situation, there was nothing stopping you from signing him to a new contract. The fact is, he wasnt wanted enough. Barca didnt have that same choice because of Fabs very young age and silly rules that are now being reviewed. Why do you think you havnt tried to steal D.Santos from them? Its because he is under a pro contract and the transfer fee will be significant! Instead of using that poor example of Rohan Ricketts , you should have used the Routledge one. He joined us from Crystal Palace at the end of his contract but Crystal Palace recieved COMPENSATION decided by a tribunal. Many goon fans admit that you have snatched talent, so I don't see why it is so hard for you to admit it.
Guyver
Rohan Ricketts was offered a contract which he didn't sign it doesn't matter if he was 15 or 19, there is no difference between that & what happened with Cesc, Arsenal developed him but just didn't cry about the cost involved. Barca couldn't get Fabregas to sign a contract at that age but it doesn't mean they couldn't match Arsenal's offer & give him a contract when he was old enough. Barca's issue was that they wasn't prepared to offer the same terms to Cesc because then all their youngsters would be asking for the same & due to the fact they spend so much money on buying players & paying ridiculous wages to has beens they couldn't afford it. It was reported in just about every newspaper that arsenal gave them 200-300k to stop them whining, however I can't prove that but what I do know as fact is that we gave them Van Bronckhorst as compo (& you can't deny he was worth at least 3-4 million at that time). Why do you keep going on about Dos Santos (we have Vela, who in my opinion is better anyway), Dos Santos has a buyout clause of 10 million, so if Arsenal wanted him & he wanted to leave I'm pretty sure Arsenal could more than afford it. You clearly don't understand how teams tap up players, Leeds didn't want to sell Lennon & certainly not for 1 million but spurs took advantage & thats far worse than anything arsenal have done, spurs had tapped him up through the media to unsettle him & if you can't see that then you're very naive. No matter how much you try & argue you're just showing how jealous you are that spurs cannot attract top youngsters & certainly jealous of the fact you pay fees like 16.5 million for rubbish like Bent. Players have to learn their trade somewhere, but at some stage they have to make the decision to stay or leave. Cesc decided to leave for Arsenal & clearly for him that was the right decision, he WASN'T going to sign a deal with Barca because they didn't rate him, so who's fault is that?? After all Arsenal couldn't pay him decent wages any sooner than Barca could, due to our own laws.
Ashburton Gooner
Ashburton Gooner, Look, the rules have changed in this country for a reason, so that the Ricketts situation doesnt happen again, thats why I brought up the Routledge transfer. Players out of contract, of a certain age cannot leave on a free transfer and the club must be compensated by a tribunals decision. This was so that young players werent stolen and clubs were compensated, for time and money invested in their youth. Leeds had to sell because of their financial debt. Not only Lennon but others. They needed the money, can't you understand that. You seem to forget that Lennon was not rated back then and only got into our 1st team through Routledge getting injured, so 1Mill was reasonable. They had to pay the price for being such a poorly run club. I dont see whats so bad about this situation, they wanted him off the books and sold him, he was under contract so they didnt have to sell him. Can you leave the Lennon transfer out of this. If they rated him so highly they would have put a sell on clause in the deal. Its that simple. If their is nothing wrong with the Fab transfer why have Barca complained (unlike Leeds) and why is this dodgy system in Spain being looked into?? Barca did rate him, just not as highly as Arsenal did. You need to check the amount of goals he scored in their youth team. I am slightly envious of the talent Arsenal have (who wouldnt be) but that hasnt clouded my judgement. You have taken players developed by other clubs and not payed them a transfer fee, leaving you with cash left over to offer large wages and signing on fees, to attract the best. If you don't see this you are deluded. I have no problem with his age or him joining Arsenal, I just feel Barca should be paid for developing him. They are not your feeder club. Ask many Arsenal fans and they will admit that this is what you do. Others do it to, but Arsenal more than most. Maybe we should come and raid that new talent your supposedly developing, but luckily for you laws in this country prevent that.
Guyver
"due to the fact they spend so much money on buying players & paying ridiculous wages to has beens they couldn't afford it" Maybe, but this is complimented by 1 of the best youth development systems in the world. Gerard Pique is another 1, they have many more, most born in the same city.
Guyver
After all Arsenal couldn't pay him decent wages any sooner than Barca could, due to our own laws, sure but the signing on fee easily takes care of that.
Guyver
Ive seen Vela and Dos Santos play and although I don't think theirs too much between them, I'll agree that Vela looks more promising.
Guyver
 

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