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FC Twente vs. Arsenal


13th August


Arsenal v FC Twente

Finally the day has arrived and we are back to some meaningful football. Arsenal enters the Champions League fray in the third qualifying round agiants Dutch side, FC Twente. When the draw was made this fixture took special notice because it was Arsenal versus the former England failure Steve McClaren. The ex-Manchester United assistant took over Twente this summer and ironically his first real game will be against English opposition.

Even though this is a home game for Twente, the match will be played at the Gelredome instead of FC Twente`s home stadium, the Grolsch Veste, because they are increasing the capacity to 24,353.

Arsenal will be without many key players for this game because injuries have ravaged the Arsenal first team. How well Aaron Ramsey adapts to competitive football will be critical as will Johan Djourou`s partnership with William Gallas. With Kolo and Senderos out with injuries this is Djourou`s big chance to shine. He had a very positive loan spell at Birmingham in the beginning of last season but had many injuries during the latter portion of the season which kept him out of the Arsenal first team. He will want to be at his best today to impress the Professor.

Vital Quotes:

Despite injuries Arsene is still confident on getting a result. The Frenchman said 'We still have a very good team out tomorrow and hopefully we can get the result we want," said Wenger.

'We always have a very young midfield and a very young team at the moment but that does not mean we do not have experience.'

Robin Van Persie was asked who FC Twente was like in England and he replied "The English equivalent of Twente? T*ttenham!' I`m not sure if he means that they are perennially underachievers with a once in a blue moon big win or what.

Fresh off of the loss against Arsenal, Ajax manager Marco Van Basten declared FC Twente has no chance at moving on to the group stages. "If you compare the teams and you have to bet on the result, most people would bet on Arsenal.

"Premier League clubs have a lot of money, that`s why they`re strong and have a lot of good players."

Steve McClaren though thinks his side can find weaknesses in the Arsenal team. "On their day, Arsenal are the best football team in The Premier League, if not Europe" he said. "They have great players, pace and power, lovely football and can get goals out of anything. We have to find a solution to that. But I`ve watched Arsenal`s last two games and they have a few weaknesses."

"We need to believe in ourselves. A lot of times the underdogs don`t perform because they don`t believe they can do it. The best team doesn`t always win. I know that more than anyone."

Swiss striker Blaise Kufo is excited about playing the Gunners. "Playing against Arsenal is never easy but perhaps now is the best time to try and beat them" Kufo said. "Still they are very accomplished tactically and their game is full of pace so they remain very dangerous. I would have preferred a different opponent, someone from Eastern Europe or even Germany but the draw is made and we must approach the game full of optimism."

"Nobody doubts that Arsenal are the favourites but that doesn`t mean anything."

FC Twente Team News:

Kufo though is suspended from the first leg because of a red card last year in the UEFA cup against Getafe, but other than that all players seem to be available for McClaren`s choosing.

Player to watch: Theo Janssen

In an interview, Van Persie said that this was a player the Arsenal team needs to watch out for, and if Robin thinks he`s dangerous then he must be. The 27 year old midfielder will try to take advantage of the inexperienced youth in the Arsenal midfield.

Arsenal Team News:

Oh gosh where do I start? Diaby, Eduardo, Rosicky, Cesc, Toure, Senderos, Bischoff, Song and Nasri are all out. I refuse to dwell on injuries though. Almunia will start in goal with Clichy at left back and Sagna on the right and Djourou and Gallas in the centre. Walcott, Ramsey, Denilson, and Eboue should start in the midfield with Van Persie and Adebayor up front.

Player to watch: Aaron Ramsey

The young player, from Wales, will play his first real game for Arsenal and it will be a massive one. Because of the injuries to Nasri, Cesc, and Diaby, Arsene has been forced into throwing Ramsey straight into the deep end. He will need to adjust quickly to the fast pace game of top-class football, but based on his performances during the pre-season he should have no problem.

Ref Watch:

Alberto Undiano Mallenco (Spain) This Spanish referee is fairly new to the international game. His first Champions League game was in 2007, when he officiated Bayern Munich v. Spartak Moscow. He also impressed at the U-20 World Cup in Canada during the summer of 2007.

Match Prediction:

3-1 to the Arsenal. Van Persie and Adebayor should have no problem getting a few goals against the Dutch side no matter who is in the midfield, though the lack of experience in the centre of the park for Arsenal should expose defensive frailties that will see us conceding at least one goal.

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The Journalist

Writer: gunnerkid107 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday August 13 2008

Time: 6:14PM

Your Comments

The real season has arrived!!
does any1 know how to get live streamings to watch the game
Folks, please don't talk about live streaming sites on vital. It is against the PL and FA (dataco) rules and can lead to sites getting into all sorts of trouble.
The Fear
Okay will do The Fear. Good luck in your game today :)
"The best team doesn`t always win. I know that more than anyone." Good God, McClaren just can't stop moaning!
Lol RH, I found that quote especially funny. I just had to include it in the preview.
Seems like an amazing atmosphere at the game from my broadcast.
Stay safe lads!
Lou the Gunneress
gunnerkid which is what???
gunner24, as Fear said above we cannot share links on here. I would like to help you find one but I cant
anybody else here
*****!!!! Robin's down.
I cant get a feed... keep us desperados posted please chaps... and good preview GK (check your inbox for feedback!)
oh my gid van persie is down injured
What a shot by Clichy. Sagna probably should of scored. Fell to the wrong person lol
THANK GOD RvP's back on. I was sweating! O_O
Lou the Gunneress
How long will he be out for do you think? I have no means of watching this match.
things not all that rosy down there
I'm listening to the official site's audio commentary (can't get it online anywhere). doesn't sound like we're playing well at all.
Thank the heavens RVP is alright. And thank you Andy I did get back to you. I am concerned about the rest of this game because Twente is coming in on some leg breaking tackles like the one on Clichy. We cant afford to lose even one more player
Adebayor has been pretty much god
Adebayor has been missing because our midfield has been nonexistent. He hasnt been able to get any service at all
yaa not xactly the dream debut for ramsey...hey where is wilshire lets tsick him in there too...that shud get the average age to14 me thinks
There's been absolutely nothing from the midfield, Walcott, Ramsey and Eboue might aswell not be on the pitch. Denilson's had a few nice touches. Not sure what Van persies up to either. We should still win this though.
Yeah GK I'm worried about our players' legs too.. Quite similar to what we saw with Ajax these 2 summers. They keep and pass the ball well and are physically tough. I was like "phew" when their finishing let them down a few times. We should really cut out the stray passes and keep the ball better ourselves though.
Lou the Gunneress
Does it seem like Mclagged has given his team the advice to kick Arsenal off of the ball? I despise that guy.
Yea Lou its not been a clean game by Twente. McClaren has them playing as dirty as a bottom half EPL team but with just a tad more flair. Where is our midfield though?!?!
oi...ramsey not good at all
Hi Gooners. So far the it has proved one thing to me: If Fabregas gets injured in a long spell this season then our chance of winning EPL will be so slim.
CG, don't forget that we could put Nasri central, which would go some way to making up Cesc's absence.
Lou the Gunneress
AB, I hear you but the question is, how long will it take Nasri to adapt? It took Eduardo a whole half season to start showing his real quality. Let's just all pray we have an injury free team which is unlikely so far.
The ATVO guys keep saying 'scrappy goal' but look, Gallas got into the box and got in front of the defender to score!! We have to get some of those goals!!
Lou the Gunneress
eboue has been descent..walcott is non existent...seriously.....but he shud hav done better with that interception
Ahh you fools lol. My stream must be behind you all's. Ruined the surprise for me. So I will be back on here after the game. I cant have you all ruining it for me lol ;)
Phewwwwwwww A breather at last!!! Now I can relax LOL...good one G...right now I will take any type of goal...YAY GOONERS
I agree we are relying on a bit of luck, but I honestly believe that Nasri has the quality to adapt quickly to the Prem, and from there I know he has the ability to fill in as playmaker if Cesc is injured or tired.
Sorry GK ;)
VP needs to chill..that shove was not necessary at it "dutch heat of the moment"? lol jk.
clichy has had a poor game i must say...most unlike him
at least we're winning ugly, which we're always accused of not being able to do. again, Gallas saves comes to the rescue!
ok y is arsene not getting the subd out i mean c'mon
I must say this season we need try and win both ugly and beautiful. As long as the ratio of GS:GA is >1 and not less than 1 in at least 25 PL matches then this will be OUR SEASON.
Yeah I'd take off RvP too. Theo's looking better on the right hand side.
Lou the Gunneress
ADe's on fire
I would take VP and put Bendtner ....WTF, they nearly equalised...darn!!!
Hahhaha we scored from a long ball! Well done Theo for the assist! Was Ade trying to dance with RvP and RvP just did the usual celebration hug? lol
Lou the Gunneress
well i gotta say........ADEBAYOOOOOOOOOOOOORRR!!!!!!!!!
ADEBAYOR!!! Nice one from Theo. They should have done that long time ago and put us into ease lol
I have to say I was worried for 80 mins!! :P Now please everyone come home okay and be fit for West Brom.
Lou the Gunneress
A whole game without any service whatsoever, the first opportunity Ade gets he scores!
job done i shud say.....for the 2nd two of our most ineffective players of the night combined...well ppl that is football
thank god we weren't playing atletico or schalke or galatasaray with this team. can't bear to think what would've happened.
Ramsey looked really lightweight today, easily shrugged off the ball. Pleased with the win though.
Hehe GK..tell him to do that against the "BIG FOUR" ;)
Relief is the word.. And I'm still a bit surprised at the clean sheet :P
Lou the Gunneress
Karley how can you slag off Adebayor? Our midfield was so poor tonight that he only got one opportunity and he scored it
Same thing's happening to Liverpool it seems, still 0-0 on 81 mins and Standard Liege are attacking with determination. :P
Lou the Gunneress
gunner24, ever heard of google? No? Well, if you've never heard of google, then google it.
Denilson looked excellent, while Theo, RVP, Ade looked average throughout (the latter mostly coz of the lack of service). Eboue had a mixed game. Ramsey still needs more time before staking a 1st team claim. Fantastic atmosphere, even on my stream, I could hear the Twente fans constantly cheering their team on. It will be interesting to hear what LD has to say about that in his match report.
Lou the difference between our game and Pool's is that they have their first choice midfield and their main player maker which we dont.
Liverpool is time wasting against Standard Liege. Wow they must be proud of their 0-0 draw. And Prits, you thought Denilson had a good game, even excellent? I thought he was average at best. Gave the ball away alot, defended poorly, and conceded too many fouls. He was the best out of our 4 mid fielders but thats not saying anything at all tonight.
True GK, I thought Denilson looked much better in the 2nd half. The whole team looked average in the 1st, so I'm discounting that.
Er not really, Gerrard was a doubt and only came on for Keane after 67 mins. Their midfield wasn't entirely 'first choice' but of course not as bad as ours - they started with Alonso, Plessis, Benayoun and Kuyt (who played 83 mins). Liege put on a good show, created chances and defended pretty well in the last 15 mins I watched.
Lou the Gunneress
Thierry scored the 3rd goal for Barca (3-0 as of now). Hleb's not even on the bench but Yaya is. Keita's playing in the DM position. Sigh Yaya... I (still) hope he's not happy on the bench..
Lou the Gunneress
Sorry I had a quick look - Hleb's on the bench. Hasn't come on though. They're still playing 4-3-3 starting with Xavi, Keita (off for Bojan) and Iniesta in midfield it seems.
Lou the Gunneress
I thought Denilson looked good in the 2nd half. He started to get more possession and tried to use the ball well. But in games like this you see what the creative qualities of Hleb and Cesc gave us. Hopefully we can get the same from Nasri and Rosicky if we can ever get him fit. It's going to be hard going if we have to rely on what was on show tonight. Though to be fair after the goal we played with a little more freedom. I reckon the players must have felt as anxious as I did. Still at least CL qualification, if not exactly done and dusted looks pretty much a formality now.
Compared with how the rest of our midfield played, Denilson was amazing. Maybe he's just tired out from all the preseason matches he's played in. I was starting to think he could be our DM solution but we still need to sign somebody.
LTG, may be not playing Yaya is an indication they may sell him i.e. not making him cup-tied for the way...where are the pool fans? lets focus on winning our 1st PL game of the season.
I agree on Denilson. Also wondering if our pre-season schedule (not just the games but the training regime too) was a bit too tough or what? 1. Injuries - especially when Arsene said they 'pushed' some of the late comers (Cesc) and maybe that's how they got injured. 2. Arsene said he'd give Wilshere a few weeks to get his level back after what was a tough few weeks for the first-timer. 3. Some of our players looked a bit tired and less sharp after the tough games in the 2 tournaments. e.g. Denilson, RvP, Theo. I just wonder if some of them played a bit too much (Den?) when the games in the 2 tournaments were more intense than the usual pre-season friendlies. Or am I thinking too much?
Lou the Gunneress
CG - Yaya came on for the Pedro kid after I made that comment. So he and Alonso are cup-tied.
Lou the Gunneress
Is it just me or will anybody else not be surprised tomorrow morning to find out that van Persie has picked up a knock and will be out of the West Brom game?
Good result considering our midfield today. The midfield did not link the back with the front well for the first hour but they did get better. It made me appreciate Arsene's fitness regime, and showed why we win so many matches late in the game- Twente ran their socks of but ran out of gas around the hour mark- our lads still had 30 minutes in the tank. Today's squad should have no problems with the Baggies if they pick up where they left off.
How did Djourou do?
well gk....stillhe got caught offside a couple of times....ok im not really slagging off im almost complimenting him by saying that he was ineffective throughout but came good when neccessarry
Couldn't bring myself to cheer when Ade scored, would of probably vomited in the back of my throat. A good performance, although the newspapers and general ****bags in the media were claiming lucky Arsenal this and fortunate Arsenal that, but then said Liverhoof "bravely" held Liege to a draw....WTF? The amount of money the bin dippers team cost they should be spanking teams like that not crying for the final whistle! We had 9 players missing and won against a superior side, what was thier excuse!?
Afri, we're talking about Djourou (who imo did well) here: LG, I celebrated that goal bcos of 3 things: (1) it's a great long ball from Djourou that picked up Theo, (2) Theo did very well on the receiving end and the assist and (3) it's an Arsenal goal that put us closer to the CL group stage. That's it for me really.
Lou the Gunneress
I didn't phrase myself very well there I suppose. I was overjoyed we scored, but sat straight back down when Ade's big ugly head popped onto the screen as goal scorer.......can't help it, the guy is trash, until he scores 40 goals and wins us the CL against Barca in the final.
We didn't play brilliantly, going into a game of this import with Ramsey and Denilson as our only recognised CMs was an enormous risk and one the boss was very wrong to take, it bordered on farcical that he would mortgage our chances of CL qulaification and our chances of starting the season well, just so he can buy a CM for a million cheaper on deadline day. Anyways, Denilson really stepped up second half but we executed a gameplan to perfection. Just as we had with Zagreb and Prhague, we let Twente run themselves ragged and turned up the heat after an hour or so, job done. Now, Wenger has to buy a midfielder, I don't give a ***** if it costs a million or twomore, just swallow your pride man because if we start this season slowly, we can forget it.
Little Dutch
Oh and Clichy was motm by a long way. He and Sagna looked to have carried their form fromlast season into this game, let's hope they can keep it up.Oh and Adebayor,was that one chance one goal? I guess he really is wasteful.
Little Dutch

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