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Chelsea 2 Arsenal 0

If you remove the football, Stamford Bridge is always an enjoyable trip nowadays. Knowing several Chelsea fans as we do, it has become incumbent in our routine to book a table at the Sporting Page behind Chelsea & Westminster hospital for some lunch and several beverages. After a decent four or five pints of Doom Bar and a hearty burger, we made our way to the ground with little optimism; the confirmation that Fabregas would be missing put the nail in the coffin for me. Our three most clinical finishers were all watching the game on the idiot box and since the injuries to van Persie, Walcott and Fabregas, Arsenal have needed six or seven clear cut chances per goal. Chelsea were never going to be that generous in my estimation. Don`t you just hate it when you`re right about the wrong things?

The Gunners immediately put the squeeze on the home side, looking to catch them cold from the off. The tactics obviously revolved around squeezing Chelsea high up the pitch, the defence played a high line and Arsenal`s midfielders played a high pressing game. Bacary Sagna got forward after as little as 50 or so seconds and swung in a good delivery- as he usually does nowadays- and Marouane Chamakh`s diving header took a serendipitous glance off of Alex and when agonisingly wide for a corner. Nasri delivered an outswinging corner which was flicked on by Squillaci, leaving Koscielny unmarked inside the six yard area, yet he inexplicably flicked his head the wrong way and headed the ball a long way over the bar when it was easier to score. Such gift horses don`t arrive often at Stamford Bridge. When they do, you don`t look them in the mouth like that. Chelsea were gradually settling into the game and might have profited from some errant Arsenal defending, not for the last time in the afternoon, Squillaci looked uncomfortable facing his own goal with a bouncing ball and he allowed Malouda to snatch in ahead of him, but fortunately he lifted the ball over the bar.

This appeared to be a much more open affair than Chelsea Arsenal games past; which suits Arsenal better. The Gunners could have taken the lead when Andrey Arshavin cut in from the left and unleashed a jackhammer of a strike which Cech did well to claw away. The game had become a curiously end to end affair, Essien headed over Drogba`s corner when we ought to have at least tested Fabianski, whilst Nasri then took the ball from the right, danced past two Chelsea challenges before screwing his left footed shot wide when he needed to hit the target. Arsenal were looking dangerous at Stamford Bridge but one always had the feeling that Chelsea could be a threat on the break. Their transition from defence to attack is always very swift and so it was when Drogba shrugged off Clichy from Cech`s long kick and bore down on goal, but Fabianski got his angles correct and was equal to Drogba`s effort at the front post. But six minutes before half time, Chelsea took a lead which edged ever so slightly against the pendulum of play. Ramires slid an inch perfect ball between Koscielny and Clichy, Nasri was caught napping and did not cover his full back, leaving Ashley Cole with time and space to send in a low cross which Drogba delicately flicked into the goal off the post with his heel. Drogba did not dominate this game, not this time. But he got a difficult chance and he took it brilliantly, therein lay the quality of the player. As is Chelsea`s wont, the chavvy stadium announcer declared with gusto, "Goalscorer, set up by Ashley Cole…." Chelsea make themselves incredibly easy to dislike with their conduct as a club.

Cole was predictably on the receiving end of some abuse, he responded by pointing at the gold champions badge on his sleeve. Fair enough, you give a little, you get a little. As the players trudged off for half time, Chelsea`s classlessness in their employees was elucidated by the same announcer, in announcing Liverpool`s home loss to Blackpool, he followed up the score line by inviting the home crowd to cheer the news that "AND Fernando Torres got injured!" He would not announce the Manchester City result because, in his own words, "who cares about them?" With John Terry as captain and Roman Abramovic as owner, it`s not hard to see why Chelsea find etiquette and dignity such alien concepts to exercise. Chelsea always introduce a half time guest of honour. Yesterday, it was 1995 Player of the Year Erland Johnsen." Which drew two distinct responses from the Arsenal fans, the first being, "He was here when you were s**t." The second, upon seeing the general air of ignorance from the home support was, "You`ve never seen him before." The lack of any sort of reaction from the home fans was instructive that, for large sections of the crowd, that was no exaggeration.

If Arsenal looked brow beaten and downtrodden as they trudged off for half time, they looked revitalised in the second half. Pushing Chelsea even higher up the pitch and pressing their opponents into surrendering possession. Chamakh gave Arsenal a different dimension in that tossing in the occasional cross. Past the banks of well drilled Chelsea field marshalls denying us space on the edge of the area. One such cross from Sagna saw Chamakh head just wide. Arshavin looked a different player in the second half. Determined to run at Ivanovic, when Arshavin gets his head down and his shoulder into a defender, there are few better in the league at beating a full back. That Ivanovic was taken off midway through the half tells a story. Arshavin again powered his way past Ivanovic and scrapped to the by line, he pulled the ball back but Wilshere could not steady himself to strike, so he prodded the ball back to Chamakh but Ramires denied him with a risky, yet brilliant tackle as the Moroccan perched his finger on the trigger. But that`s not to say Arsenal were having it all their own way, once again Squillaci hesitated with a bouncing ball and Nicolas Anelka robbed him off possession, leaving him clean through on goal. Anelka rounded Fabianski put inexplicably put the best chance of the game into the side netting.

Ashley Cole also had the ball in the net after Ramires` cross reached him at the back post, but a marginal offside spared Arsenal. Once again, Chamakh provided a threat in the air when he connected with Nasri`s corner, but headed the ball wide off of his cheekbone. Arsenal were making most of the running, but in truth, were not threatening Cech enough. Though this did not have the usual feeling about it of Chelsea looking comfortable with our bouts of possession, Chelsea did not look entirely to ease to me, but they are still incredibly solid, even when under siege and when precious chances come, you have to take them. Arsenal did not do that. One could make a case that if Drogba had swapped sides yesterday that Arsenal would have won. But with Walcott, van Persie and Fabregas unavailable, we just didn`t have enough players to make the difference in the final third. Chelsea maximise what they do in the final third. So when Nasri hit an awful square pass across his defence straight to Anelka, Koscielny was left with little choice but to cynically take Anelka down lest he skip through on goal again. At the time I nodded sagely, "far enough, take the booking there." But hindsight made a fool of my own cynicism. Drogba teed up a free kick as Fabianski lined up his wall. But with the whole ground expecting the Ivorian to attempt to stretch his tiresome record against us (when is he going to retire already?), Alex stepped up and absolutely lamped the ball into the top corner. Not a great deal you can do but admire the strike. It is incredibly difficult to hit a ball that hard and keep it down. Alex seems to have the skill down to a tee. Game over.

The Gunners knew the game was up and it was only the goalkeeper that prevented a very unequal, but embarrassing score line. First of all Anelka slipped Essien through, but once again, Fabianski got his angles correct and smothered the Ghanaian, whose impact on the game had been surprisingly minimal. Fabianski was also equal to a Cole effort in injury time. But ultimately, the final whistle was greeted with joy from the home fans who had seen their side beat Arsenal again. I felt Arsenal`s efforts deserved better on this occasion, Arsenal squeezed their opponents high up the pitch and forced Chelsea to surrender possession time and again. With the players we had missing; we went to Stamford Bridge and gave a good account of ourselves against a very good team. Chelsea have won their last eight encounters against fellow members of "the Big Four" and their consistency is worthy of commendation. Whilst it is true that Roman`s money built their empire, you have to admire the fact that they gave retained their hunger and humility as a team. The Chelsea way is that they find a way and they do it time and again. From our point of view, I would be surprised if a team gives Chelsea that much of a game at home again this season, but the simple truth is, Chelsea scored two very good goals and Arsenal wasted their decent chances. That Cech wasn`t over worked isn`t an indication of our poverty of opportunities, but more the waywardness of our shooting. But there was plenty to be enthused about; Wilshere was, in my opinion, the outstanding midfielder on the pitch which is no mean feat for an 18 year old in the company of the likes of Essien. Fabianski was blameless for the goals but produced several good saves himself. But the truth is, we missed Fabregas` penetrative passing, van Persie`s incisiveness in the area, Walcott`s ability to push defences back. We even lacked a decent attacking option on the bench when we were controlling the game. We gave it a very good shot, but we came up a little short against a team that will probably win the league again. The uncomfortable truth is that we might have to sit tight; Chelsea`s team is at their peak whilst ours is still a couple of years away. There`s an old saying that you meet the same people on the way up as you do on the way down.LD.

21.FABIANSKI, 3.SAGNA. 18.SQUILLACI (capt), 22.CLICHY, 17.SONG, 19.WILSHERE (41.E.Thomas `81), 2.DIABY (7.Rosicky `70), 8.NASRI, 23.ARSHAVIN (11.Vela `86), 29.CHAMAKH. Unused: 15.Denilson, 20.Djourou, 27.Eboue, 53.Szczesny.




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The Journalist

Writer: Tim Stillman Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday October 4 2010

Time: 10:24AM

Your Comments

Very unlucky. What did you make of the penalty decision on Chamakh? I have only seen it once, but i am sure Cech got none of the ball. Chamakh probably went down to easily though, flapping his arms. I was also frustrated at the foul on Song not given leading up to the first goal, and even though there was 20 seconds of play after that it felt like another kick in the teeth by an official
paul_ownz
That's a pretty balanced summary. The result was more disappointing than the performance - but then it's only the result that counts. The game often throws up these sequences of wins and individual scoring runs. In this case the 6 wins against our 2 in the last 8 meetings between the two clubs isn't the most compelling example of such sequences (though maybe Drogba's is). The differences between us are there but are also quite small really.
Amos.
Or you could say we have only beaten them twice in our last 18 meetings, drawn 5 and lost 11. The two victories came without Drogba too.
paul_ownz
the big name players almost never play the big games for us.. hmmm.. hv to admit, the wait has been extremely long indeed
McGooner
You could pick anytime frame but if you're relying on the last 18 games (but why 18 - why not 24 or 30? - other than that it rather spoils the picture) then it's worthing noting that our two wins are in the more recent of those games. As sequences go it's really a rather short one. It may not last and Chelsea have had to endure much longer sequences between victories against us than we against them.
Amos.
I guess i chose that time frame because thats when they became challengers to us. To win the title you need to beat the teams around you, and we have not been able to do that in recent years too frequently. In the last 18 games against United we have won 4 and lost 10. I was pleased with our performance yesterday, but in truth we often perform well against Chelsea but end up on the losing side. I also find it frustrating like most that our most influential players are absent through injury in far too many of the top games.
paul_ownz
"To win the title you need to beat the teams around you". Just not true. ManU won the title the season before last despite having the poorest record against any of the other big three around them only winning one game. All our record against ManU and Chelsea tells us is that we haven't been as strong, relatively, over the last 5 years. If you think that the last 5 years fairly reflects where we are now and where we might be over the next 5 years then the concern is understandable. Look at the changes that have taken place and are taking place and maybe there isn't too much to be despondent about.
Amos.
Ok i will give you that one, although they did take 4 points of Chelsea. Generally speaking i would say you have to win or not lose to your main rivals. The three recent league titles we won we didnt lose to United. My concern/frustration/problem is that every year it seems to be down to injuries that costs us. In recent years injuries to Eduardo, Van Persie, Fabregas and a whole load of others seems to be the principle reason in my eyes why we are missing out/falling down at the last hurdle. How can we combat this problem? Do we need more steel in the team or a change of game?
paul_ownz
On injuries we just need a change of luck. Nothing much else anyone can do about it.
Amos.
Infact let me rephrase that. Generally speaking you have to take some points of your main rivals to stand a chance.
paul_ownz
You just have to take more points than your rivals. It doesn't really matter where they come from. The only advantage in taking them off rivals is that it means they are dropping them at the same time as you're picking them up but if you have a good number of points from elsewhere in the bag it might not matter. As I said ManU lost heavily to their main title rivals the season before last, could also have afforded to lose to Chelsea and still won the title.
Amos.
Amos re beating the teams around you - that was a one off, an exception, you need to start treating it that way.
shewore
Why?
Amos.
Over the last three or four seasons there are three things that seem to define Arsenal; we play pretty football, concede (match changing) goals and suffer a LOT of injuries. This season is exactly the same and the Chelsea game reflects it quite nicely. We had a lot of possession and conceded two significant goals (I think Drogba’s goal was a fluke) but probably would have done better if we had Fabregas, RvP and Walcott on the pitch. I agree that the Premiership is beyond us this year, so is the CL and probably the FA Cup barring the elimination of Chelsea and United. In reality the Carling Cup and CL qualification represents our achievable goals this season. One positive from yesterday though was the performance of Fabianski who had a pretty decent game.
Sir Henry
Sorry Paul tend to run with Amos. Have you already given away the return at home against Chelsea? The only game so far this season I have realy been disappointed in is the Baggies game. Disappointed yesterday, sure but detered as to our chances no way. Suspect theres many a twist in store this year.
alwaysgunner
We put in a good shift yesterday, I dont think any team will perform better at the bridge with the spine of their team missing I do have 1 gripe though. If Wenger was planning to start playing Song higher up the pitch why didnt he look to bring in a defensive midfielder? If Denilson is his defensive midfielder why isnt he playing? Wilshere is such a disciplined player he was the deepest lying midfielder for large parts and when your struggling for creativity its beyond bizarre.
iceman10
Im sure you were disappointed after the Sunderland game too. I think our problem is we are not good enough defensivly throughout the team so the onus is to keep attacking. People dont track runners, our holding midfielders go wandering etc etc. Therefore we dont keep clean sheets(2 in 10 this season), so while we are missing our chances you feel as though we have to score at least 2, possibly 3 to win.
paul_ownz
I say if Song's role is no longer a holding midfielder, don't play him. He made little contributions high up the pitch, lack creativity, thus disrupt our attacking rhythm. He don't know what to do when he got the ball..Better start Rosicky in his place.. Rosicky/Wilshere/and one non-attacking CDM could give us different result yesterday (could). We don't need Song to join the attack..we already had Nasri, Arshavin, Wlshere.. Diaby and Song should stay back and not making forward runs when our fullbacks is attacking..that left us huge gap for the opponent to counter us!!
Malaysian_GunnerZ
The lack of finishing cost us in this game. Overall the play was very good and we were at least competitive against Chelsea. It was not an entirely comfortable win for them, and the gap is narrowing. However, the gap is still there, and this Arsenal team shows why they are not yet ready to be Champions.
prits
really can't fault the lads. we lost to two contenders for goal of the week.
Arsene_Wonder
MG, it's not about Song being an attacking midfielder, it's about him performing the same duties, just higher up the pitch.
Little Dutch
Yup, paul_ownz that is Wenger’s approach through and through. The idea is to outscore the opposition rendering the defence obsolete (almost). It would be truly great to achieve the “you score one and we’ll score two” power play but I don’t think it’s possible (Brazil in ’82 was fairly close though). Wenger inherited an Arsenal in 1998 that was well drilled in the art of defending. He added his attacking verve to it and, well, you know the rest. When it comes to building his own defence I don’t think he can quite appreciate the “art” and we get what we have now.
Sir Henry
But do we really need song doing that LD? With arshavin and nasri offering little or no protection to the full backs surely we need a specialist defensive midfielder to fill in the gaps that will always appear bcos of the way we play.
Iceman10
How much of the unbeaten defence did Wenger inherit? This tendency to repeat tabloid mythology that Wenger doesn't do defence as though it's true is remarkable for the ease with which the unthinking will do so.
Amos.
So Amos, why is it then that each and every season Arsenal fail to win trophies? Why is it that they fall apart at pretty much the same time year in year out. Why do they struggle to beat the better teams? Not a wind-up, just an honest question or questions. I ask only because you seem to believe you have a far stronger intellectual grasp on the major issues than everyone else. So i invite you to enlighten us.
Tony Rocky Horror
"Why?" - Well, it's entirely up to you, a bit nonsensical not to though really...you'd be here all your life analysing one offs and trying to shoe-horn them into something that's very, very unlikely to happen again.
shewore
"This tendency to repeat tabloid mythology that Wenger doesn't do defence" - people judge by what they see in front of their eyes. Any argument that posits AW's prioritization of defensive coaching needs to provide sound, solid evidence from the last 5 seasons. Anyway, our main problem at the Bridge was attack, not so much defense.
jaelle
There is no "us" here TRH. You are not one of us. Your statement "why is it that each and every season Arsenal fail to win trophies" is inaccurate as it only applies to the last 5 years. Anyway, there have been only two better teams in the last 5 years than Arsenal in the league and we have beaten them thrice in the case of Man U and once in the case of Chelsea. You are splitting hair here about a team whose lowest point in the last 5 years (4th place in the league) is your zenith since the start of the PL. Thats funny.
Deltaforce
Fair enough LD. But this is also a problem you know. When the opposition team start the counter attack. That's when opposition players start to sprint, and Song don't have enough pace to hold them. Thus make him vulnerable to fouls that surely a yellow offense. His second yellow at SOL this season tells it. He'd better off shielding the defense from the middle of the park. Buying some time for our mids and fullbacks to run back..Just a thought.
Malaysian_GunnerZ
It was a straight question shewore. Why do you think it's a one off? ManU fared only slightly better winning 2 of the 6 games against those in the 3 places below them in 2007 as well as. They still won the title despite dropping more points than they won against those teams. It isn't confined to the 2009 season. Chelsea dropped as many points as they won in winning the title in 2006 losing 3 times to other big 3 teams.. So why do you think that it's a one off - an exception? Statistically you are likely to drop on average at least 7 points against top 4 teams on your way to a title.
Amos.
Can someone please tell me how Wenger inherited Lauren, Toure, Sol, and Cashley?
gronedrone
Good point gronedrome. Those who say that AW inherited (but completely rejuvenated) the defence that won the 1998 league-FA cup double has a point but the invincibles defence was a new one. Even the 2002 league win had Campbell, Lauren and Cashley apart from Upson playing prominent roles - none of those players were inherited. Dixon and Adams retired at the end of the 2001-2 season.
Deltaforce
Also worth pointing out that in Graham's last season, that back four shipped 55 goals.
Little Dutch
deja vu here...a lot af gooners wont have heard of Paul Davis David Price etc etc. Poor effort at taking the p**s .Lets not make out the Emirates is filled with gooners from way back.. A few grudging compliments for Chelsea but the old chestnut of RA's money comes back to haunt you does'nt it, as your always harping on about it.. little dutch...dry your eyes, get over it and move on. your getting sadder mate.
springy
If you were as "carefree" as you claim springy, you wouldn't keep sniffing around for approval. The reason UEFA is introducing regulation on financial fair play is a belated acknowledgement of financial doping - no two ways about it.
Deltaforce
I don't have a greater intellectual grasp on things than others here TRH but it's easy to get that impression when compared to the tenuous grasp that you have. It's something that I would share with most other posters here - with the exception of a few other spuds. There isn't much mileage in attempting to explain what the club has accomplished over the last 5 years or that our failure to win a trophy in that time hasn't left us less able to compete successfully for them in the immediate future. My feeling is that we are stronger and getting stronger still. Anyway it's not as if we've gone half a century without a title is it?
Amos.
Has any one posited the argument that Wenger prioritises defensive coaching jaelle? Or are you just commenting on what you think you saw with your own eyes? :)
Amos.
done again by the Chelsea boys - embarassing!
Red Boy
Nope, not embarrassed whatsoever Red Boy. Chelsea are a great team and its not embarrassing to lose away from home to them and we played well but I sense thats not the response you were looking for?
gronedrone
agree, gron, playing away from home against the top of the table team, having lots of possession etc but in the final 3rd, failed to trouble cech, if RVP was playing maybe a different story
123spurs
I calls em as I sees em bouncy. There's a great deal to admire in Chelsea but a great deal to dislike too. I won't bury either under the carpet. Again, if you want to characterise the praise as grudging (of course it's grudging, it's at the expense of the team I support) and the criticism as harping, then that's down to you. But if any club encourages their supporters to celebrate the injury to another player, I'll criticise them whether it's us Watford or Chelsea. If you want someone to lick Chelsea arse, may I point you to a Chelsea fansite of some kind. I wouldn't expect to go on Vital Chelsea and see pages and pages of glowing praise for Arsenal FC. I don't need that kind of validation, perhaps the fact that you so clearly do for Chelsea is instructive?
Little Dutch
Best club in London lost against the best team in London, simple.
Iceman10
Perhaps our defence seemed better in the past because we had two physically imposing, outstanding players in Petit/Gilberto and Vieira protecting the midfield. I also remember Freddie Llungberg had fantastic workrate coming back helping the right back. Perhaps our problem lies in (a) becoming far more attack-minded in the last 5 years and (b) not having the players that wanna work even harder the other way. Whatever it is, I always get the feeling that Arsenal can concede at any time, even against the lesser teams. Until we rectify this, our attack is never going to outweigh what we do defensively and we're highly unlikely to beat the top teams and ultimately win a trophy.
Gooner_Vin
Very balanced reporting, LD, never mind what rival fans have to say. The Arsenal side AW put out on the day showed spirit, coming off the traps as they did and without our key men, just didn't come along with their shooting boots. Chelsea will not be looking forward to the reverse fixture on this one; surely, our key players should have returned from injury by that time.

I happen to harbour the expectation of a win next time out; the lads only need to have greater belief and avoid being anxious or hurried in front of goal. The team just has to begin to believe they can take points off the main rivals while making it business as usual with the mid-to lower-table sides. A trophy is not out of the reach of the side, yet, so...
Naijagunner
Amos, last season Chelsea picked up more points against the top 4 than United yet won the PL with 1 point difference. Which basically nullifies the "Man Utd won despite having a worse head to head record "argument. (Which is just a one-off if we pull out stats from previous seasons as well)
Sajit
It doesn't nullify anything. If you read my post above Sajit you'll see that 2009 wasn't a one off at all. It doesn't really matter who you take the points off as long as you collect more than those around you.
Amos.
I must correct your point about Ivanovic. Carlo didnt take him off because he was getting 'beaten' by Arshavin (I never actually noticed Arshavin the whole game besides that one shot) it was because you had put in Rosicky to try and outpace him. So Carlo realized this and put in Ferrara to match speed with speed.
ChelseaDC
Rosicky isn't particularly pacy and was playing in central midfield anyway.
Little Dutch
Can't help but feel a little concerned that Wilshere has been called up for both the U21 and Senior England squads. Are we looking at another Walcott scenario where England overplay a promising youngster? Would be very easy for Jack to burn out or get injured, especially against a less skillful mob.
Wyn Mills
good article Tim Stillman,I always enjoy reading your articlles,by the their is one hilarious piece on VC about double agent JOE MESSI COLE,you peoples comments on that will be appreciated
kishaloy_nag_blue
deltaforce, not sniffing around for approval. enjoying my time in the sun..if your trying to read minds get it right!!
springy
littledutch..bouncy???... yeah, funnily enough I was doing the bouncy before,during and after the game.........carefree!!
springy
I make my comments through observation and discussion not from “repeating tabloid mythology”. A little less of the condescension from you would be nice Amos. Just look at the image transformation that Arsenal has undergone over recent years from dour and defensive image to highly dynamic and expansive one. I’m talking about an approach and a team ethic and not necessarily the personnel. That approach comes from one man who has built a beautiful attacking side but a brittle team that can be found out by better sides like Chelsea. Their defence repelled our attack (as they did last year) but our defence couldn’t do the same to them and we lost the game (as we did last year).
Sir Henry
The mythology I was referring to was illustrated by your claim that Wenger couldn't 'appreciate the art' of building a defence of his own which is scotched immediately by citing the example of the unbeaten side. It's also worth noting that the defense he inherited that you referred to also produced its most successful performance in terms of goals conceded under his tutelage. If your comments are formed from observation and discussion then you aren't doing either well enough to avoid having their obvious defects highlighted. A little less pious indignation would be nice Sir Henry.
Amos.
Our defence was far from impeccable during the invincibles, we simply reinvented the adage of "best form of defence" & it's one he's still obviously placing more emphasis on.
shewore
However it was achieved it still gave us the best unbeaten run of any team in the league - ever - consistently - over 49 games. That can only mean that its the best form of defence we can have. Conversely when Wenger played the tightest defence we'd had conceding only 17 goals we also had the poorest attack record and still lost games - still missed out on the title even though the winners had conceded more than twice as many goals as we had.
Amos.
Also worth mentioning that the invincibles also had the best defensive record in the PL in that season - and comfortably so.
Amos.
Indignant, yes, pious, no Amos. So do you think that our current defence is a product of Arsene’s appreciation of the “art”?
Sir Henry
Sir Henry, there does seem to be an overall decrease in quality of our collective team defending over the last 4 years - barring 2007 when I thought our midfield of Hleb, Cesc, Rosicky and Flamini were very good at attacking as well as doing their defensive duties. However about the Chelsea game when you say their defense "repelled our attack" while ours did'nt repel theirs may not be true. The stats reveal that we had just one lesser shot on goal than Chelsea did and Chamakh's headed miss and Koscielny's miss were two of the easiest misses in the game. Both drogba's goal and Alex's goal were very very difficult to prevent. If our players had taken easier chances than theirs their defence too would have been found wanting.
Deltaforce
At the heart of the problem is the players Wenger has picked in recent years in the hope of taking Arsenal forward. One of the key characteristics of a managerial great is his ability to dissasemble a squad gradually as they enter their dotage, and replace them with players who are worthy of playing at the highest level, for the biggest clubs. This is something Ferguson has done consistently, but Wenger is struggling to do that now. I think one of the problems is that has replaced great players with players who aren't really as good. He hasn't managed to get the right blend. At the same time, it's notable that when he's built his teams in the past, he's placed a high premium on having the best French players in his teams. This wasn't a bad strategy when France were the best team in the world; but it's all change now that Spain rule. This is a point we rarely here asserted. Furthermore, it's also probable that he's selected players who he thought would go onto great things and haven't: in other words, he's placed his faith in players who haven't really repayed his trust in them, and that's an issue for his conscience as much as anything else.
Tony Rocky Horror
here should be hear, needless to say.
Tony Rocky Horror
Tony Rocky Horror- C'mon, the joke's over, you're wasted on here. Come on to our site, with fewer egos and more subjects. Unlike this Abigail's version, a proper party and, like a teenagers bedroom, hundreds of posters. Do you want to be dissed by Deltafart?
lordjohnny
Yes...go on Tony, toodle on over to VS to join lordjohnny and others and enjoy (or rather endure) a true meeting of like minds. :)
Amos.
Oh i shall, i shall indeed LJ. It's fun and happening on VS. Trouble is I swore to myself that i wouldn't pop over unless they lost...and, well, the rest is history as they say. Just can't seem to stay away.
Tony Rocky Horror
It's a disorder TRH - obsessive compulsive or something along those lines. What happens at Arsenal occupies far too important a role in your life for you to be able to stay away.
Amos.
TRH you are like a married guy who obsesses over his mates girlfriend. She is more attactive, more fun and you could imagine happy times ahead with her, instead you are stuck with your wife and can only fantasize about the other woman. You act cold towards her because you dont want anyone to know your true feelings
paul_ownz
littlejohnson, you are a carbon copy of TRH in the sense that both of you cant live your daily lives without coming here. Its time to let your man love for LD go liljohnny and go back to the teenage playground that is VS.
Deltaforce
The best way to avoid all these intruders is to start a new article....that way the old article is no longer visited
Arseniger
 

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Vital Members League (view all)

1. Amos. 44
2. Naijagunner 40
3. Galway Gooner 30
4. paul_ownz 29
5. Guyfox 20
6. shewore 15
7. Joe_@** 15
8. Rocky7 12
9. Nwankwo25 10
10. damiano_tommassi 6

League Results (view all)

Latest Results
Arsenal 2 - 2 Hull City
Chelsea 2 - 0 Arsenal
Arsenal 1 - 1 Spurs
Aston Villa 0 - 3 Arsenal
Arsenal 2 - 2 Man City
Leicester City 1 - 1 Arsenal

League Table (view table)

Team P W D L GD Pts
4. West Ham 8 4 1 3 4 13
5. Liverpool 8 4 1 3 1 13
6. Man Utd 8 3 3 2 3 12
7. Arsenal 8 2 5 1 2 11
8. Swansea 8 3 2 3 1 11
9. Spurs 8 3 2 3 -1 11
10. Stoke 8 3 2 3 -1 11

Breaking League News

Vital Villa Man Of The Match v Everton (Away)
» Aston Villa : 21/10/2014 14:00:00
Lambert Aug 2012 - Promises Of Attacking Football
» Aston Villa : 21/10/2014 14:00:00
Liverpool: Real Madrid Preview
» Liverpool : 21/10/2014 13:21:00
We Were the Better Team Insists Van Gaal!
» Man Utd : 21/10/2014 12:58:00
Chelsea Legend Linked to Vacant Post!
» Chelsea : 21/10/2014 12:55:00

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Who is most likely to end as top scorer this season?
Suggested By:  
Campbell 5%
Giroud 2%
Podolski 2%
Ramsey 2%
Sanchez 31%
Sanogo 2%
Walcott 5%
Welbeck 51%