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Teams News: Arsenal vs Schalke

The mighty Gunners take to the field tonight against Schalke as Champions League football returns for the winter.

After the frightful performance against Norwich on Saturday Arsene`s army will look to bounce back in the best way possible. Hopefully the boys will have a few tricks up their sleeve and can provide us with a real treat.

Schalke represent the toughest task in our CL group stage and a win of any kind tonight will see us win 9 points from 9 and all but qualified for the knockout stages.

Let`s see how the team lines up.

Arsenal team: Mannone, Jenkinson, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Santos, Coquelin, Arteta, Ramsey, Podolski, Cazorla, Gervinho

Substitutes: Shea, Koscielny, Djourou, Arshavin, Gnabry, Giroud, Chamakh




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The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday October 24 2012

Time: 6:57PM

Your Comments

Squad looks like the expected one, though something inside of me wished to see Cazorla or Arteta rested. I also thought we could get a surprise like Arshavin or Gnabry starting. I kid. This is serious business and the lads just have to be focused tonight. Good luck lads.
Naijagunner
Come on you Gunners
Sajit
Bar Cazorla, we don't look as though we have enough quality in the final third. Gervinho a disappointment again. Ramsey not really a wide man to make a difference. Gonna need a big improvement to win the game.
Gooner_Vin
Jenks must see the movements ahead of him instead of his favourite past time, passing backwards. Santos appears swamped and does need more support from both Poldi and Arteta/Coquelin. It will be foolhardy to sub Santos as we could lose our offensive fluidity from that flank, plus Vermaelen could be forced into a 2nd yellow if he he is moved to LB.
Naijagunner
Poldolski needs to be doing more, you'd feel as we have little creativity in attack with Gervinho playing without any conviction to make a difference. He hesitates too much and needs to get stuck in a lot more. Ramsey must look up sometimes to make the quick pass, what with all the runs being made in front of him. At some point, both sides will throw caution to the wind and it will be who can hurt the other more that will count.
Naijagunner
Arshavin or Gnabry on for pace and creativity. That's a thought.
Naijagunner
bull crap
Sajit
i agree with the commentator, Santos needs to come off, he looks slow and clumsy and is constantly out of position.
bowiecokemirror
Santos keeping the goalscorer onside two matches in a row. How long does it really take to see that he is a liability? It was obvious after around 5 minutes in this match.
bowiecokemirror
***** off
Sajit
This has all the portents of a really poor season. I can't see Wenger pulling a rabbit out of the hat two seasons on the trot. We're a one-man team with Cazorla. Gervinho is never gonna be any better than he is now. I don't see us qualifying for CL next season. Our lack of goal threat really worrying.
Gooner_Vin
It's been a very tame performance; intense at times but we should be doing more as a team. Very disappointing result at home.
Naijagunner
Good players are no longer cheap in the transfer market. AW needs to understand any player out there that is cheap is a risky move. Giroud, Podolski, Gervinho, Santo, Chamakh, Adrian, all these players are camouflages. Players like Ibrahimovic, Jovetic, Falcao, Modric, Lloriente these are real deals but we always go for the other ones.
Arseniger
I know many on here might not agree, but if this season fizzles out and we scrape 4th or don't make it, and don't win one of the cups, then I think this should be Wenger's last season. Something just feels very stale at Arsenal. We see the same reel every season and you can see every remaining season of his being the same. Yes we have injuries but so do other sides. For me, instead of Walcott and Gervinho, we should be combining their wages plus transfer feel plus our own funds and buying Tier 1 players, not Tier 2. Same goes with the likes of Ramsey and Diaby (too injury prone). Just getting bored with it.
Gooner_Vin
Goon_Vin is right. Time for Wenger to move on if this continues another year. Yes same inadequate players, same consistently injured players, and same deficient tactics and defence. And that is on top of selling our best player every summer. It IS very boring now. One positive is that nobody after any of these players next summer!!!
Will-i-am10
This was Bould as manager! If Wenger goes, guess who'll be carteaker manager? You think it's **** right now....
e dubbz
Wonder if Cazorla misses his old team seeing as they are blazing the trail in their CL group.
Naijagunner
We just need some freshness all round in the team. I won't go as far as to ask for Wenger's head yet but this places the club's season at risk of petering out into the worst ever. The likes of Gnabry and Theo need to be playing more which means Theo must be signed on, promptly. Gervinho needs time on the bench to come on late in games where we need to take advantage of tiring defenders. Poldi hasn't been impressive lately and seems to prefer not to take risks and go on the offensive; not the player we used to know. My concern is that QPR will believe they can rub it in further and this lot don't look like they have the stomach for it.
Naijagunner
Wenger will have a rough ride at the AGM tomorrow, you'd think. He must have hoped for a victory tonight to give him some stalling or breathing space. Too bad!
Naijagunner
Wenger's latest gamble failed the moment Diaby limped off and jumped on the treatment table. I'm not at all convinced by Ramsey. There's a curious sense of inertia that grips the team whenever I watch him play. He's not the quick creative force in midfield we need. He even prevented a certain goal by Podolski tonight. Others may disgaree but that's the way I see it.
Wyn Mills
Ramsey was never a creative force. Hard working, maybe. But never creative. He has no eye for the pass and won't thread it even when a run is made; he rather elects to keep possession by passing backwards. It isn't going to get easier; QPR on saturday, capital One in midweek, United and then the reverse against Schalke. The treatment table has to shed some weight.
Naijagunner
I don't worry about losing matches, every team loses, but when you lose and perform so poorly it's a worry. How can a team not register a shot on target till the 93rd minute in a home match is beyond me. We really need to buy a striker in the transfer window ... we've just got no firepower.
Rocky7
That is one thing, Rocky. What about the supply to the Striker? We lack efficient supply lines at the moment; players that cause danger and need attention thus freeing up space for such a striker. We missed an effective wing play too.
Naijagunner
Naija- that's what we've lost with RvP. As well as his goals, his movement and touch were ideal for the game we want to play. Giroud isn't the same type of player but we're playing the same way. I'd say we need a new striker and another creative force in the final third because Gervinho and Walcott ain't it.
Gooner_Vin
this time last week you were saying how great Giroud was with his 4 assists and 2 goals (despite his misses) and now you all bleat about getting another striker. Giroud was topscorer in France and Podolski had a strike-ratio similar to RvP and played for a relegation team creating few chances.. there is no 'bigname' you can get realistically that will make any difference.... Utd had an 8m striker from Mexico who did rather well I believe..... not the players, its the system and mindset... stale..
Viyyash-Ramosh
Again, calm yourselves down. Poor against Norwich, and poor against Schalke; admitted. not good enough. That DOES NOT MEAN that suddenly all of the good things about the squad are bad, that all the signings are crap, or that we're going to finish 12th in the league. Knee-jerk. Two games into the season, 'Steve Bould's made us unbeatable' after the last two games, suddenly we'll finish nowhere, the players aren't good enough, Wenger out... do you hear yourselves?
damiano_tommassi
Tommassi... you seem like a sensible girl, pls explain to me how this 3 'forward' system works with having a player like Cazorla in a free role behind the striker... if that was the case, wouldnt it be just 2 midfielders slightly overworked and underpaid lol ?..... or maybe.... its just a 4-5-1 in disguise (I suspect it just might be)
Viyyash-Ramosh
Damiano why do you make things up? Unbeatable????
shewore
Viyyash - mind your manners, and we can have a sensible conversation. It works based on fluidity; the players exchange positions. 433,451, name it what you like.

Shewore - that's all you want to take from the post, is picking up on one exaggeration, made for the sake of emphasis? Okay, let me re-word that so as not to offend your delicate sensibilities; 'at the start of the season we had conceded no goals, and many people attributed that to Steve Bould; they also suggested that 'finally' Arsenal had an excellent defense'. Does that sit better with you?
damiano_tommassi
fluidity lol... thats the illusion that supports this whole house of cards. there is very little fluidity and INTERCHANGING (unless Diaby thrusts into the space vacated by a marker Santi) cos the trust and unselfishness to make runs for others is not there... dont you think that if it was then you created CHANCES worth noting.... how many in last 2 games ?.... this is now getting into dire straits, maybe a victory against a hapless QPR will dampen the deluge... til the game after at least....5th.
Viyyash-Ramosh
Viyyash, two games does not equal a season. If we play like that - and create so few chances - in the majority of games, come back here and remind me; I'll give you an apology and tell the world you were right. After just 2 games though? Nah. Besides which, I fully expect (as, I suspect, do many here) that we will qualify from this group.
damiano_tommassi
Viyyash, just tell me then, which teams will be in the top 4, since you have so graciously, allotted your usual "best effort" position to Arsenal? Arsenal will finish above you lot, obviously, so......talk to me Viyyash.
Naijagunner
We're missing some of our more direct players (Diaby, Chamberlain, Walcott, Rosicky, even Jack) which I think is making us look a tad predictable and easy to defend against at the moment. There's nobody who can carry the ball and commit well organised defences. We of course also have the quite ludicrous scenario where we only have 2 central strikers in our whole squad and the manager doesn't rate either of them, but that's another argument.
Little Dutch
There are 30 games and 90 points to play for so, rather too early to be fussed. However, Wenger does need to freshen things up a bit. One or two new inclusions from the youth sides and a deft purchase in the window and we should be good. We have to be up for the fight every game, from now.
Naijagunner
It would be good to see a 'proper' striker; I like Giroud and he may well turn out to be that guy; but for me, Gervinho, Chamakh and even Walcott are not that guy.
damiano_tommassi
Of course, "inclusions" include our returning players like Wilshere, Diaby, Ox and Theo.
Naijagunner
it is mind boggling what's happened to our striker situation, if Wenger didn't expect Giroud to hit the ground running, then what was his plan? I don't see how he fits into our style of play anyway, not that I don't rate him, but i'm struggling to see it. Hartson mkII at the mo. You could cut and paste a hell of a lot of posts on forums and apply them to any one of the last 7 seasons to be honest, nothing will change when Wenger is here, it really won't. Yes Damiano, stop making things up.
shewore
you need to play 2 forwards more centrally, to allow for more half-chance plays into the box. too bad the great Cazorla the 'free' guy will now make this impossible... 'luckily' you will have a reprieve against the mighty QPR and all will SEEM well again to allow the charade to continue a tad further.... Liverpoo had this since they turned into percieved 1-man teams with Gerrard and then Torres. Liverpoo are now a mid-table team ... AW's time has passed at Arsenal, trying to play like Barca (4-3-3) but loving the 'hole' guy system - not happening.
Viyyash-Ramosh
haha "liverpoo" - did you make that one up all by yourself?
shewore
I thought it would be apt as 'Arse' seem to be emulating them..hihi
Viyyash-Ramosh
That's well funny, bet you write "Manure" and "Man Sh1tty" as well don't ya! narf narf
shewore
5th ;-)
Viyyash-Ramosh
damiano, I think you miss the point here. The point is this will be another fruitless season. And Wenger never seems to learn. Ramsey IS NOT good enough. Perpetually injured players Diaby, Wilshere, Walcott, Rosicky etc still on our books and we still rely on them to come back into the side rather than offloading them and getting reliable players who are there when the club needs them. Yet alas, here we are complaining the SAME players are out again. Wenger sold stars, didn't replace them and gambled that these injury prone nancys would be available. The gap between 4th place and the chasing pack has clearly closed, and even if we stumbled into 4th yet again should we be happy with that? I wan't silverware damn it ! Not a same old 4th spot.
Will-i-am10
Will, this MIGHT be another fruitless season - to say it 'will' be is simply not true. Nor is it true to say that "Wenger never seems to learn", that's just opinion. "Ramsey IS NOT good enough"? Disagree. Quality young player. "Perpetually injured players Diaby, Wilshere, Walcott, Rosicky etc still on our books" - you want us to SELL Wilshere? I'm not sure there's any point having a discussion if that's where you're coming from! "The gap between 4th place and the chasing pack has clearly closed, and even if we stumbled into 4th yet again" - we finished third last year. Anyone else think that we need to 'offload' Diaby, Wilshere, Walcott and Rosicky? "Wenger sold stars, didn't replace them" - sold a striker and a holding mid (who didn't hold); bought two strikers and an attacking mid. So, not true. Didn't replace them like-for-like, maybe. With the same quality - arguably. But to say they weren't replaced is just wrong. You want to be careful - Shewore will tell you off for making stuff up!
damiano_tommassi
You can't say Wenger's got it wrong after a couple of dire games, but... it really does seem like the same old feeling year after year
shewore
I don't see why conclusions are drawn on the entire season based on 2 poor performances (and boy, has it been poor). I don't see anyone offering an analysis of why we've been so poor the past 2 games. Every time this happens, it's always the same 'this season will also end badly' blah blah. To be honest, I don't know why things have been so flat. The gameplan of the opposition seems simple - mark Poldi and Cazorla out of the game, and they're set. Way too predictable.
prits
Same feeling, yeah, definitely. We expect to be winning - largely because of Wenger's early work, I'm sure you'd agree - so to be without a trophy for 7/8 years is annoying. It would be good if we can be more rational and less emotional with the club, though. Less extreme and more measured. (what am I saying, this is the internet! If we don't win the next game, Wenger out! ;) )
damiano_tommassi
whats the ingredient that was there for 1st 3-4 games (when you looked v.good) and missing since (when you've been v.average).... I'll give you a clue, his surname begins with 'D'....without him you will continue to be gash, irrespective of the overhyped Cazorla..
Viyyash-Ramosh
viyyash, are you diaby in disguise trying hard to win your new contract here?
Joe_@**
Completely Damiano, i'm basing this on Wenger's own very high standards that he set quite some time ago, that he unfortunately just cannot live up to anymore
shewore
"cannot live up to", or 'hasn't lived up to in the last few games'? Perhaps the last 8 years? Because I thought that in some games this season so far, we looked awesome - just as much as we looked poor in the last two games.
damiano_tommassi
I'm judging it on the last 5/6 seasons mate ... it's pretty obvious. He hasn't lived up to those standards and simply can't. Remember he came close, in 07/08, we needed to kick on a bit.... but he signed Silvestre.. that was the closest he got.
shewore
We also signed Samir Nasri and Arshavin in the season after 2007-2008 - as well as Ramsey. As Silvestre was only bought as a short term CB/LB back up it's a bit silly to use him as an example of squad building policy. Less measured and more extreme indeed.
Amos.
And Bischoff... point is we could've kicked on and signed someone proven. Arshavin was a complete emergency, and he did his job - keeping us in the top 4.
shewore
I can't understand the last 2 performances. They are as bad as anything I've seen. I don't usually criticise players for not trying but yesterday it seemed like their spirit was completely broken. There was no movement from the forwards and nobody wanted the ball. Why it has happend all of a sudden is a mystery. I've never seen so many Arsenal players lose form at the same time before. Yes we are missing Diaby and Gibbs who are both important players but other clubs get injuries to key players and manage to cope without them. The blame has to fall at AW's feet but he he still has time to save our season but he needs to sort it out soon.
bowiecokemirror
Damiano you may like Ramsey. But I cannot see this guy lifting a trophy for us, or winning games for us against the top 3. I feel the same way about much of the rest of the squad. RvP made us look good last season, without someone to bang in the goals like he did we are going to be in trouble. Wenger had his junior talent plan 6 or 7 years ago, and by now we should have been on top of the world. We aren't. It backfired on him big time. Don't get me wrong I love my club, I just want to get out of this hole, and just qualifying for the CL every season is not good enough for a big club like Arsenal.
Will-i-am10
 

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