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

Birmingham vs. Arsenal

St. Andrews Stadium

27/3/2010

15:00

Arsenal v. Birmingham

Over land, and sea, and ... Birmingham?

The 'B' word is on everyone's mind. Yes, I'm talking about Birmingham. Before we can salivate over the glamourous tie with Lionel Messi and co, the team has an equally important task at hand.

December 26th, January 9th. Those two dates prove how difficult this match will be for Arsenal. Neither Chelsea nor Manchester United came away from St. Andrews this season with all three points. A win tomorrow would be a major step towards the title.

Vital Quotes:

Neither Arsene or the McLeish are interested in talking about what happened two years ago, and rightly so.

Wenger: 'Overall we want him to come back there and just win our game. That is the only way you can deal with that situation.'

McLeish: 'We have moved on. I don't want even want to talk about it. Eduardo is back playing which is great. I don't feel I need to comment on it. It is a couple of years ago.'

Birmingham Team News:

Birmingham are close to have a clean bill of health. Garry O'Connor (groin) and Lee Carsley (ankle) are long term absentees. David Murphy is also out with a hamstring injury. Gregory Vignal will be back on the bench.

Possible Starting XI: Hart, Carr, Johnson, Dann, Ridgewell, Bowyer, Ferguson, Fahey, Gardner, McFadden, Jerome

Player to watch: Joe Hart

It's not often I can pick a 'keeper as player to watch, but Birmingham don't have a great scoring record at all and Joe Hart is a fantastic up and coming goalie. If Birmingham get points out of this match, I'd put money on Hart making several key saves.

Arsenal Team News:

The big news during the week was that Thomas Vermaelen's appeal had failed, and the Belgian will miss his first league match of the season. Nicklas Bendtner is a doubt, but Arsene reckons he'll be okay.

My Predicted Starting XI: Almunia, Sagna, Silvestre, Campbell, Clichy, Song, Diaby, Fabregas, Eboue, Arshavin, Bendtner

Player to watch: Andrey Arshavin

Arshavin said he wasn't feeling well during the West Ham game which lead to criticism of his preformance. Also, some misguided comments to the rags about the strengths of the team haven't helped either. He is due a good preformance.

Match Facts & Stats

This is the 130th meeting between these sides. Arsenal lead by 57 wins to 38, with 34 draws.

Birmingham are unbeaten in their last 11 home games in the Premier League. If they avoid defeat on Saturday it will be their longest unbeaten run at home in the top flight since the 1973/74 season.

Nicklas Bendtner spent the 2006/07 season on loan at Birmingham, scoring 11 league goals

Ref Watch:

Howard ******* Webb is the head match official. Don't be surprised if he tries his damnedest to **** us over.

Match Prediction:

Birmingham have enjoyed a good a return to the Barclay's Premier League this season, but lately they've sputtered. It might be a good time to play them. I'll go with a 3-1 scoreline.

Next Fixtures:

31/3 (Wed) - FC Barcelona (h) - Champions League

3/4 (Sat) - Wolverhampton (h) - Premier League

3/6 (Tue) - FC Barcelona (a) - Champions League




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The Journalist

Writer: Brice Coffer Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday March 26 2010

Time: 7:06PM

Your Comments

It sure will be interesting to see how Song & Sol cope in defence. It will be good practice for Song to slot in beside TV5 for the Barca game. Cmon you gunners!
Deltaforce
Oh, no Coward Webb! I don't know if I can watch....
jaelle
just hopin d match doesnt take d sting out of d lads.. to get anythin out of barca, u need to b fit physically' mentally' psychologically' emotionally (ie cesc)' hell even spiritually
shady gunna
tippin walcott to do well. has a point to prove against brum. who concurs?
shady gunna
theo was our best player that fateful day at st andrews in 2008, scored both goals i think
shady gunna
Eduardo to score the winner
Sajit
Must win!!
collow
I dont think Wenger will play Sol and Silvestre together. Song looks certain to start in CB, and his partner is likely to be Sol (according to hints by Wenger). Better to focus on the League and worry about Barca later. I dont want a situation where neither the League nor the CL work for us.
prits
Agree Prits They were good last sat when Verminator was betrayed by the ref. Hope that Eduardo plays and scores, it would by some justice for him at last.
Armory
Yep. Agree; it has to be one match at a time now, even though, the 2nd leg comes up too soon after the home game against Wolves. Now, that gives me concern cos we are likely to play with the brakes in that game with Wolves, no matter how hard we try to focus. BTW, the Arshavin comments in the papers were recycled, presumably, to put pressure on the team spirit. That bit of news first came in the papers last quarter of 2009. The Rags!! Howard Webb?? For sure, he will be trying his best to do us in; don't know how we seem to get him for most games. Pah!!
Naijagunner
i sense an arsenal rout, sorry joe hart, 5-1 to arsenal!
49ers
Sorry to go completely off topic guys, but I need to ask why and how its possible for the morons over at vitalspuds to delete non racial banters that they can't take, but its ok for them to come over here and spout all manners of crap including but not limited to racial abuse? Went over to wind them up yesterday after some of them had, yet again, highjacked a thread, and what did I get? The comment I posted, which only sought to agree with their own description of the typical Spud fan as idiotic, was yanked off. Fair play to them, but I'll like to know why its different on our own site.
deledudu
But back on topic, I'm confident the boys will find a way to get the job done today. This team is coming along nicely, winning is as much an habit, as is losing, and these boys have formed the habit of winning. We are technically superior to the Brums, the difference will be a function of the will to win and the resultant mental attitude of the two. I expect us to shade this game. The worst that will happen is a draw, but I'm hoping we can find a way to turn that into a win in light of what is at stake.
deledudu
Is it just me, or are the 'Arsenal Team News' and 'Birmingham Team News' the wrong way around??? ...Besides that i think it will be a scrappy win for us. Three points, don't care how it's done.
FuiKaka
Due to family stuff, i'm going to have to listen to Talks**** radio rather than ATVO for coverage of the game. Which is going to be hard enough as it's going to be on mw, and where i'll be the mw isn't the best, so i'm miss bit of the game. So i'm going to start filling in my own commentary, and this is how it will go...."Eduardo scores a Brilliant hat-trick... No injuries a head of the Barcelona game...Arsene able to take off his Key players due to the fact that Arsenal had scored 5 goals by the 50mins....."
hackneyval
Oh dear it's Coward Webb... :(
GoonerLou
FuiKaka, the home and away team news sections have been fixed.
GoonerLou
haha my bad FuiKaka...
gunnerkid107
Should be easy for you, as long as Silvestre doesn't play. My Gooner brother's often made the point that he tries his damndest to sabotage the flow of play every time he's on the pitch. Or am I being presumptious?
DubaiSpur
Horrible fixture given all the baggage around it and the way the media keep banging on about two years ago and the psychological challenge for Arsenal. AW needs to knock that on the head right now. That was two years ago and this a new game. Oh and Mr Man United is refereeing the game is he? Brilliant, that'll be 12 men we're playing against and a good keeper. Think I will definitely resort to my tried and trusted ritual to try and push our guys over the line. Forget Barca- I want the league points!
julieloveshenry4ever
julie.. you are assigned to be the crazy girl like always without streams to watch.. now go.. and be crazy like always... you always bring good news when you did that :D
MrE._Man
LOL, Mr E! I always miss the Saturday matches because I'm always out.
julieloveshenry4ever
Tough one today, I feel this will be hard fought. Maybe a cheeky 1-0 to the gunners but Webb will probably reach for the back pocket.
Omogusii
I hate Howard Webb :(
julieloveshenry4ever
The Ramsey incident was a great show of mental strength by our players but to really overcome the ghost of 08 we need to win today.
gronedrone
Walcott and rosicky start,with Nasri and AA benched.
ajwb
Not happy about that. I was worried AW might do this. This ain't Portsmouth, it's Birmingham. No Nasri or Arshavin starting? Forget bloody Barca-I want 3 points for the league! For crying out loud!!!
julieloveshenry4ever
I know Julie, but then I think Tomas can cause them problems as well, Theo's pace will be a great weapon for a well-organised defensive team like Brum. COME ON YOU GUNNERS!!
GoonerLou
C'MON ARSENAL !!
FuiKaka
D@mn, they're showing Chelsea-Villa on TV anthere's been some problems with the internet and I can't watch via you-know-what! ARRRGGHHHh Guys please update poor souls like Julie and me with the latest developments of the game!!!
GoonerLou
We've started to look good going foward now,passing well and working the ball
ajwb
"Is there any good news yet?"
julieloveshenry4ever
Julie - We just got a yellow card for Clichy for a disgusting clearly obvious dive. Thanks Howard Webb ...you're a ****
FuiKaka
Gardner just dived and Clichy got booked
ajwb
******** Coward Webb is a ******** *****!
MrE._Man
and now Bowyer does another disgracful dive ...this is *********. Howard Webb ...how i hate you
FuiKaka
classy dives from birmingham players this afternoon!! very impressed
TPowell
Howard Webb really is a **** isn't he
ArsenalRob
Stars are so gonna sold out if each of us tried to explained how we describe the damn ref right now.
MrE._Man
Hehe Villa have equalised as we speak. ;)
GoonerLou
Tommy Gunn looking very lively. I love the way he takes chases pretty much anything and everything.
ArsenalRob
Even if Villa win ...Howard Webb is still a c.ock
FuiKaka
I see Howard Webb still cant get anything right... he is so anti arsenal! i swear the F.A have paid him extra to favour brum...
Dan_83
oh my **** days... Cesc injured...
ArsenalRob
Cesc dont look so good after that tackle o_O
MrE._Man
Why won't Cesc go off? Argh!!! ??? Wtf is wrong?? *****!
FuiKaka
Howard Webb is a ****
Sajit
More ******** brummy dives ...*****!! this *****! ...this is awful
FuiKaka
Oh crap, isn't there any GOOD news????
julieloveshenry4ever
hahahah
ajwb
McFadden dives in an attempt to get clichy sent off, class club this birmingham
TPowell
This ain't exactly making reassuring Reading :(
julieloveshenry4ever
I dont think Cesc will come back out for the 2nd half
ajwb
None. Webb is a disgrace and we have to suffer his incompetence. Yet again. So many fouls by bmhgam players getting looked over.
Sajit
Why is every time I look up the match thread on a Saturday, it's always bad news? :(
julieloveshenry4ever
Their diving is inexcusable ...Cesc needs to go off, he can't keep hold of the ball
FuiKaka
nope and imagine the furore if an Arsenal players started diving all over the pitch trying to get the opposition player sent off? But as it is Birmingham and English/Scottish/Welsh players diving then it's OK.
Armory
How bad is cesc?
julieloveshenry4ever
I just yelled at the service apartment people for their failure in getting the internet up to normal speed (for me to watch you-know-what). That doubles my frustration you know! >_<
GoonerLou
Cesc needs to be subbed. He is struggling on the pitch. Come on Arsenalllllllllllllllllllllll
Sajit
So it's looking like game over then? :(
julieloveshenry4ever
Oh just great, now Cesc is having a problem. Did Nasri start warming up? I'm so worried....
GoonerLou
Subs: Fabianski, Nasri, Eduardo, Vela, Arshavin, Eboue, Traore. I say bring on Nasri!
Sajit
I like birmingham's tactics, kick the ball in aimless directions, when an arsenal player gets close, go to ground, wait for Webb's incompetence to show through, get arsenal down to 10 men, amazing!
TPowell
You know what I think we need to break somebody's leg to start getting the respect from the English commentators. After all braking someones legs is an good 'ol way to "get in their faces". can you imagine the MoTD clowns drooling over the legitimacy of an leg breaker from A Song on some hapless soul?
Armory
When will we ever get a bit of luck OR even some justice?
julieloveshenry4ever
Apart from all this diving, how are Arsenal doing? Are they even going close?
julieloveshenry4ever
Why is it quiet? What's happening now?
julieloveshenry4ever
Julie, we looked decent initially but after that - no.
Sajit
I knew there was too much pressure on for this game with all the talk about two years ago. Feel very depressed. Looks like we're going to blow it after all. :(
julieloveshenry4ever
Cesc still on! He's sprinted out, too. Fingers crossed!
ArsenalRob
Cesc is still on
ajwb
this is the same gardner who tackled cesc earlier?
MYgood-ners
Julie, what's happening is Birmingham are being total ****s and playing on Howard Webbs many weakness's ...such as him being a total cun.t for example.
FuiKaka
how was that gardner tackle not a yellow? especially considering the other yellows this match?
TPowell
You-know-what finally on... first thing I saw was that #13 complained to the ref after HE took Song down by clipping his leg with both legs. How dared he!!! And how dared Webb, no yellow card?!??! >_<
GoonerLou
Le Tiss is commentating on SSN - means arseanl wont win - that guy is a ******** jinx
Dan_83
Oh dear now I have to put up with another thing - the commentators are 5h!te! >_<
GoonerLou
I guess Cesc waited until half-time to get treatment because Colin Lewin couldn't sort him out. Fortunately, we have Miracle Manu in the dressing room - I love Eboue!
ArsenalRob
Is Eduardo warming up? I just heard the crowd sing his name.
GoonerLou
They've been chanting Eduardo since the 1st minute
ajwb
C'mon guy's we need a goal here!!! Hopefully we will get on soon to settle us down.
Armory
Tomas still the one making things happen.
ArsenalRob
3 - 1 Chelsky ***** that can't count on Villa when you need them to perform:(
Armory
HAHA! Gardner falling over
ajwb
gardner dives again!! this time landing on the ball with his hand and getting a handball!! hilarious
TPowell
:O OMFG I JUST SHAT MYSELF
FuiKaka
Ah ok, cheers ajwb, I just started watching at half-time. We're doing okay attack-wise I think. The goal WILL come! That Gardner, I hate him!
GoonerLou
hopefully this moment will wake us up!!! its been an indifferent performance so far
gronedrone
That was too close.
ArsenalRob
@ gronedrone - We just haven't been playing on our terms at all...
FuiKaka
Now Gardner to score an OG! >_< What a despicable cheating ar5eh0le!
GoonerLou
***** chelsky 4 - 1 up even though we win their goal difference will still be much better.
Armory
I reckon we should get Nasri on. Maybe for Theo, and switch Tommy to the right.
ArsenalRob
We need Julie's comments
ajwb
Rosicky was our best player, but we all know he can't complete 90 mins at 100% intensity.
gronedrone
What the F**k does it really take for Coward Webb to give them a yellow card?!??!?!? Theo, then now Tomas was sent up in the air! F**king disgrace!!!
GoonerLou
Ahh, Andrei, I can't believe I forgot we had him on the bench! I knew there was something missing!
ArsenalRob
******** Bedtner GO FOR THE ******** BALL!!
FuiKaka
Brummys got a yellow ...i'm ******** shocked
FuiKaka
Those were my initial thoughts FuiKaka, but actually I think Johnson got a touch on it and Bendtner wasn't balanced to adjust for it.
ArsenalRob
Arshavin is very lively, he looks determined to win this match. But Birmingham are trying to end the game with a succession of fouls.
gronedrone
...someone kill Howard Webb...
FuiKaka
coward webb,says it all
ajwb
AAAARRRRRGGGGGHGHHHHHHHHHHH AFTER Abou finished so awesomely and he blew a foul that happened ages ago?!?!?!?!? COWARD WEBB I WANT YOU DEAD!!!
GoonerLou
I'm too depressed Reading this commentary to say a word. But here goes; "Is there any GOOD news yet?????!!!!!!!"
julieloveshenry4ever
Absolute World Class by Nasri
gronedrone
SAMIR ******** NASRI!!!!!!! I WANNA ******** ***** YOU RIGHT NOW!!
FuiKaka
NASRIIIII
bowiecokemirror
Good news is, Julie, Andrey and Samir are lively after coming on. And Song's doing fantastically well in stopping them. We're also doing ok creating chances.
GoonerLou
GOAL!
SUX2BU
SAMIRR!!!!!
ArsenalRob
samiiiiiiiiir *****in yeeeeeeeees
ajwb
mARYY ME JULIE!!!!!
FuiKaka
Thank you Julie!
ajwb
SAMIRRRRRRRR!!!!! AAHAHHHHHHHHH What a shot, from long range, SAAAAMMMIIIIIRRRRRR!!!!
GoonerLou
Why does our season always end up the same way? Will somebody please stand up and be counted? I can't take this again!!
julieloveshenry4ever
Pleeeeeeaseee bring Dudu on
FuiKaka
As a youngster Nasri was clearly one of the most technically gifted players but for Marseille and Arsenal he finds difficult to express that talent. Moments like that remind me of what a player we have at Arsenal in Nasri.
gronedrone
Julie you're my new best friend!!! :D
GoonerLou
Get in there my boys!!!!!!!!!!
julieloveshenry4ever
Now we just gotta hold on and not give any fouls away in our half because they will just hoof it up.
gronedrone
Fkn Take that CARR You ****!! ...Howard Webb ...its about time
FuiKaka
Just flippin' hold on guys!!!!!!!!! Isn't there any more good news? ;-)
julieloveshenry4ever
That spud reject Carr gets a yellow
ajwb
love how coward webb waits til the end of the game before giving brum their just yellows
TPowell
Carr should have been sent off but considering Webb is officiating no one will be surprised. Arshavin was just about to shoot with the goal empty and carr simply stopped from without even looking at ball. Clear as day, denying a goal scoring opportunity.
gronedrone
OMG Nasri Shoot!!
FuiKaka
Villa are just awful. 6 - 1 Chelsky
Armory
Please just hold on please!!!!!!!!!!
julieloveshenry4ever
make that 7 - 1 armory
ArsenalRob
:O ...
FuiKaka
1-1
ajwb
alumnia
ajwb
Oh what a MIGHTMARE.....
GoonerLou
Well thats it unless both utd and chelsky slip up now we are out of it
Armory
Where's full-time?
julieloveshenry4ever
ghost of 08 has returned
gronedrone
feels like bull$hit
ajwb
Another title lost at Birmingham
gunnerkid107
...we need a new goalkeeper, just when i thought his mistakes were over, he's now just cost us the our chance at the title. No excuses for him anymore. Reina, Cech and Van Der Sar wouldn't make the mistakes he has this season, mistakes that have just cost us.
FuiKaka
For *****s sake Wenger buy a goal keeper instead of that *****ing clown.
Armory
You are joking me please.
julieloveshenry4ever
I wonder if the sense of injustice feels EVEN GREATER this time. SERIOUSLY!
GoonerLou
I feel sick :S
FuiKaka
Well, it was a good title fight while it lasted. Only hope it could have lasted longer.
prits
We didnt play great today but i thought we could just nick the 3 points..oh well :( I feel more gutted now than losing to Chelsea and Manu
ajwb
Nasri should have scored the second.
Gun 'Em Down
Prits, the fight goes on. Please don't use past tense while it lasts. If we demand the players to keep the faith, so should we. Chelsea and utd WILL drop points.
GoonerLou
I didn't hear any of you guys complaining when Almunia saved that Diamanti penalty last week.
gronedrone
We are still in the race. I believe so. Nasri's moment was a beauty. Almunia's wasnt... how horrible
Sajit
******** embarrassing. That is the problem with Almunia, ******** inconsistency.
gunnerkid107
No that ******** sorry excuse for a goalkeeper should not have let that in GUD Nasri played well. It was the Spanish waiter that let us down again.
Armory
gronedrone ...Almunia has made TOO many mistakes for a top class keeper this season ...TOO MANY ...there is no denying that. I've shut my mouth about him although he's frustrated me until now. But that is it... Too many ***** ups. New keeper please. Thanks. No arguments nescessery.
FuiKaka
@ gronedrone Almunia may have saved the penalty but he has cost us far more points than he has won for us. Lets face it if Wenger insists on going into next season with him as # 1 goal keeper then he surly has lost his marbles.
Armory
i no the feelin they done same to us ;)
123spurs
I could honestly not see Birmingham getting an equaliser and we are far from out of the title race Chelsea are only three points clear with 6 games left, if you give up this easily in life, well you won't achieve anything.
gronedrone
Lou, This team should have closed out the game, thats the difference between a title winning team and a team thats still a bit naive. I always thought that ManU were favourites, but I was hoping that this Arsenak team would at least run them close. I'm desperately disappointed thats not happening.
prits
yeah gronedrone I've been a supporter of Almunia, of course he's not a great goalkeeper but I never used to consider him a liability. However, he hasn't looked up to it for a while now, and I think I might join the band who'd like a new goalkeeper. Sure he can save penalties - he has an excellent record there - but its his lack of reliability in doing the simple stuff which is worrying, like keeping a firm hand or being decisive in coming out.
ArsenalRob
its called being a realist ...i only hope it doesn't go to ManU again. Buy a new Keeper. If we have money to spend, new Keeper please. No other team has had to put up with as much goalkeeping errors as we have this season.
FuiKaka
I'm one of the most optimistic gooners you could find, and I won't give up on the title just yet, but it has to be said it would take something of a miracle now. If Man U win later they'll be 4 ahead of us and with a significantly superior goal difference.
ArsenalRob
If we beat Wolves next week at home, we're still in it. Remember they play each other next week. They will both drop more points. But what a kick in the teeth.
julieloveshenry4ever
Time to ask the football gods for a favour. We're owed it after Howard Webb's perfomance as Head Arsenal Hater.
FuiKaka
Hopefully Jacky Wilshere can inspire Bolton to victory tonight
ArsenalRob
Both will drop points, but I'm not sure Man U will drop 5, and even if they do, we've still got a couple of games to play as well.
ArsenalRob
Was a bit nervous about this one... Next weekend will be big for the top two. Whoever wins that might run with the title.

Still in it with a chance...

Omogusii
Instead of deciding our own fate we're leaving it down to hope. That's the difference. Now i'm gonna get drunk and talk ***** for a couple of hours. Night.
FuiKaka
The away draw isn't the problem, the reaction is. I want big performances in the next 2 league games. Barca can get lost because I just don't care. League is everything. There are more twists to come. Hold your nerve.
julieloveshenry4ever
Walcott offered zero today. It looks like the players don't trust him. At the start of the 2nd half, he stood there for 10 minutes without touching the ball and we kept playing through the left hand side which made us so predictable. What an anaemic display from him. He has zero tricks on that right wing. Arshavin had one good chance to make it 2-0 in front of goal. He miscued. Instead of slagging his teammates, he should focus more. Almunia? Good penalty save last week but i cant recall a keeper pushing so many balls into his own goal. I was not even surprised. Its typical Almunia. He's not an international keeper, never even been called up. I'm not blasting him on this one occasion. I have always said we need a great keeper and Almunia isn't one. Great keepers dont make this kind of errors as often.
Gael-Force
Its hard to hold your nerve with a dodgy keeper guarding your goals and a dodgier one on the bench Julie.
FuiKaka
Exaclt Gael-Fornce ...his penalty saving record is good, you can't dispute that. His overall play is ******** nerve racking and full of rookie mistakes. Bring back fkn Semen.
FuiKaka
6 games to go and potentially 3 or 4 points behind the top two with a inferior GD as well. no matter what happens between Chelsea-Manu next weekend, we will still remain third. real kick in the teeth this one. in 98, 02 or 04, we used to win such games. two good chances missed to make it 2-0 and then Arshavin gives away a silly freekick. giving them time to put men in our half and be ready for the free kick, ******** hell, when will this team learn. im not even looking foward to barca game now, this is so painful. this team will always remain the nearly men..
luckys_10
Glad to see im not the only who feels like we got nothing to lose against Barca, Some fans wont care if we finish second in the league or runners in the champions league, as long as we dont win a trophy we will have failed in the eyes of some people, Im with Rocky on this, even if we go trophyless this season players like Denilson, Diaby, Song, Ramsey, Bendtner, Nasri and Vermaelen have established themselves as top class premier league players who I am convinced will win trophies for this club sooner or later. United will need a serious spending spree if they want to stop us from winning the title next season. People will inevatible compare this match to the 08 fixture (as I alread did in frustration) but after we scored the goal I thought the game was won and I dont get that feeling that I used get whenever we went 1-0 up where we were liable to dominate the game and conceded a goal from nowhere. Birmingham were very unfortunate not to take the lead but very fortunate get the equaliser.
gronedrone
Its like some Arsenal fans want their team to fail so that they can feel vindicated about their ridiculous predictions at the start of this season. I am sorry if this Arsenal team didn't live up to your expectations of challenging for Europa league spots, maybe next season we will try and be more "realist" and not try to win the league but focus on getting that all important fourth spot.
gronedrone
Lol FuiKaka going by your spelling you are drunk already;)
Armory
Yeah, gonedrone. Anyone who thinks this is over yet, needs to calm down. Lets see where we are in 2 weeks. The other 2 will drop more points.
julieloveshenry4ever
We've been leaving it late too often in the past few matches, and this time it finally came back to bite us in the arse.
gunnerkid107
gronedrone just because some ppl here are venting their frustration on the team and on certain players, it doesent mean they dont care for the club or dont want the club to win. this is such a low moment in the season that yu cant help but feel this way. and its not going to be all rosy in the future if we dont make certain changes to the squad. need a world class keeper, two really really good central defenders and a world class striker if we are to challenge the top two next season. yu can say all yu want about United rebuilding next season and blah blah, fact is they will still have a squad that will be perfectly good enough to win the league next season. this is an amazing bunch of players we have, but there are a few of them in there who arent good enough for a team that has ambitions of challenging for the league title and winning it every season..
luckys_10
wtf is with all this moaning..But for brilliant (attitude wise) performances against Hull, Stoke and WHU , we would never be in this position in the first place! Enough of pointless moaning. Irrespective of how this season ends this team has made me proud.
Sajit
I agree Sajit but it doe's not change the fact that we need to strengthen in curtain areas, such as goal keeping, and another central defender in the mould of TV and we will be the team to beat next season. Don't forget we have been without our main striker for most of the season. i would love to see how utd and chelsky would have coped with that.
Armory
lol certain
Armory
luckys_10 you have made my point for me.
gronedrone
its true we have lacked the bite of RvP but come on... has he ever played a full season without injury for us? He misses like 15 league games a season... bendtner tried but he's still young and some games pass him by... Unsure whether walcott will ever make the mark. when will he move to centre? he's been with us for 4 years now. does wenger still see him as an attacker because he's no winger...
Gael-Force
Unlucky tonight. Thought the team put in a good shift and showed a lot of heart but just couldn't finish some of the easier chances that we had. The deflection past Almunia was a really really sad way to end the game. Its almost as if a trip to Birmingham has to be tragic neccesarily. And yeah...its time Howard Webb showed his red devil tatoo to the world.
Deltaforce
I dont buy for moment that Howard Webb is biased towards Man U, he is just a flawed referee, his decision making is extremely poor and a lot games have been affected by his huge ego.
gronedrone
It must be just an amazing coincidence then that Webb gets most of his decisions wrong in games which have a direct bearing on Manc fortunes!
Deltaforce
Webb is our world cup rep in south Africa. He is a clown a huge f*@king clown who allowed gardner 3 Yellow card fouls and a deliberate handball before he booked him, He then allowed Ratboy Bowyer to clean out Walcott and decided he would have a word instead of produce a card, to top it of he played on for the Diaby goal but then had a brain fart changed his mind and disallowed the goal. I find it hard to believe Webb can be so bad so often when all his poor decisions benefit 1 team.
iceman10
Just back from Birmingham, devestated. When you have a clown in goal eventually he will show up as the fool he is. Sure he saved a penalty last week and made a decent save against Jerome today, but another mistake by him has cost us a goal and probably the title. Even if united & Chelsea draw next week and we win, we will be 2 points behind United & with their goal difference they would have to lose again or draw twice at least with us winning all games. I will keep faith but realistically its title dreams over. Almunia is not world class and as a club we deserve better. Who i do not know, but he is not good enough for me
paul_ownz
I agree with Sajit. All I asked for at the start of the season was for us to put up a serious challenge at the top of the table, and if we continue to fight until May we would've done that. I'm proud of this team, and still confident for its future. On the other hand, we had the chance to exceed my expectations, so its dissapointing to see that pretty much let go, especially considering the boost it would've given to our future seasons. I can see us climbing to second by the end of the season, but I don't think both Chelsea and Man U will drop enough points for us to come 1st. Their goal difference is higher than ours as well.
ArsenalRob
This is not a serious title challenge. When the team are underdogs, we fight really well, and claw back 9 pt deficits. But when the pressure is on, when its really on, and we need to keep ploughing through with the results, this team fails. You can blame Almunia for this one, but there have been others to blame for previous cock ups. This squad showed some really good mental fortitude to fight through the prevoius 2-3 games, but overall , its a disappointment.
prits
So I guess Julie is the one everyone fancies?
Chelsea24/7
Are you trying to get her number for JT? :)
iceman10
kip da faith ye gunners!!
shady gunna
pls no d&g guys.. the top 2 also droppd points at brum.. only gutted at d late equaliser
shady gunna
excruciating as this result is, there's no need give up, there are lots of twists and turns to go, and we were always going to drop points somewhere - we couldn't win 14 games on the trot. Chelsea and ManU will drop points, for sure. we just need to win every game from now and i think we're well capable of that. let's see where that leaves us. forget individual errors, this is a team of character and mental fortitude, let's get behind them and win every game and see where it leaves us. honestly, this isn;t over
Gooner_Vin
it was 13 games on the trot,and the record is 14 held by Arsenal, so it was possible.....now it is very unlikely
fran merida
OK, it's the morning after, and I am trying to look on the brightside! Before Nasri scored we were only getting 1pt from this game anyway! And Yes, Manure and Chelski will drop points and maybe just maybe We can Still Win this!
hackneyval
This was bound to happen some time as our recent matches have been so tight.
agaterocks
We are not out of it yet but we sure don't help ourselves. We gave 12 pts to both MU and Chelsea this season. that's remarkable for us to still be close to them. We have a thinner chance but we still have a chance. As for the goalkeeping situation, i look at Man U. They have won the title for the past 3 seasons and who's their keeper? E Van Der Sar, a 40 year old goalie that neither the much lauded future England No1 Ben Forster or the pole Kucschsak have been unable to dethrone. Thats not a coincidence. The position is not for young talents but for older safer hands. ferguson knows it and you don't see him taking any chance like we do. When Van Der Sar was absent, ManU wobbled. Now he's back he gives confidence to the whole defence. I, for one, think we should let our your keepers go on loan to further their education and invest in older safer hands. Almunia is older but he clearly is not a great keeperr. he is not even considered good enough to be on the fringes of the Spain squad. This wenger experiment with goalies has to stop.
Gael-Force
The plight of goalies. Strikers miss 4 sitters in one game but score one at the end and they are heroes; a keeper makes saves to keep his team in it, for 90 mins and one slip (note that Almunia only had a split second to judge the flight of that deflected ball), he is a Villain. I believe soccer is a team game and the whole team has to accept responiblity for this result. Had Theo, Arshavin, Nasri, etc, taken their chances; had the defense ensured Almunia wasn't troubled to make such an 'error', would the team not be celebrating a good victory? We are still in this one, no matter what it seems like now; this is a team that had been been written off twice already, this season. Make that thrice, given the pundits submissions before the season started. I shall bank on Citeh to do a job on both ManU & Chelsea; Chelsea look up for next weekend's game too. So, why can't we hope to win all of our games? I don't think City can take points off us at home and Spurs is 50-50. Honestly, I worry more about the Wolves game than the Spurs and City games, simply because it comes before the 2nd leg with Barca. Keep the belief, guys.
Naijagunner
At the game yesterday I looked at my watch with 3 minutes left, and just KNEW they would equalise. There was a sickening and depressing inevitability to it. I actually thought Brum would be given a dodgy penalty, due to Webb being a COWARD. Still, a point is a point, but AW, pleeeeeeeeeeeease play our strongest 11 for the remainder of the season.
CockneyRich1
Thats why you get a top keeper, because keepers generally do little in a game but have to be focused/alert/ready for 90 plus minutes. How many points/goals have we dropped/conceded down to Almunia. Im not saying useless im saying not good enough for a top 10 european team which we are. Even MOTD which i hate picked up on it, he does not control the box, shanks goal kicks and looks less than convincing. Dont get me wrong, i am not one to be negative and i would never boo my own player at the game but in venting my frustration to other gooners i must say i think we need a better keeper.
paul_ownz
despite wenger saying that brum came before barcelona, it obviously wasnt as he decided to rest nasri and arshavin.. almunia is not to blame as he only had a split second to react to that ball.. i hope the players keep up the spirit and keep on fighting till the end but i hv a feeling we only hv two weeks of the season left unless we somehow manage to stuff barcelona.. this team has still not learnt to deal with pressure
McGooner
we gonna end up not winning the title because of this result. it's been a while since the game got over and i'm still not over it. it's all good saying we challenged for the title and we are up there with the top two, but when ur so close to winning it and then have *****ups like yest, it's really disheartening and makes yu feel sick forever. imagine if we lose the league by a point or two, we'll look back at this result and it will haunt us forever..
luckys_10
having said that, United's next three games, Chelsea (h), Blackburn (a), City (a). they can surely drop more than two points in these games, Chelsea have three tough away games in United, Spurs and Pool so we can definetly finish second, but we need to be spot on from now and win every single game left. i'm trying to be positive, but we need United to ***** it up now to win this one..
luckys_10
It's overcooking it to say if we'd won this game we would've won the title. We'd have still been third whatever happened in the game. We needed either one of ManU or Chelsea to screw up anyway. In that sense not much has changed other than we need them both to screw up now.
Amos.
luckys_10, while I'm hopeful that the Mancs will drop points against the chavs and maybe even city one can definitely count out Blackburn. Allardyce is another Fergie rent boy. I can bet my lovely car that Blackburn will be an easy game for Man U. Fat sam will just roll over and die when they visit.
Deltaforce
Lmfao Iceman! Jt did ask me to be on the lookout.
Chelsea24/7
Agree with Amos, there. Not much has changed, just the permutations. Deltaforce, LoL on Fat Sam; that's exactly my sentiment, ditto Twitchy. Those two will always roll over, all spread eagled for Fergie, whenever he comes calling, irrespective of the team. I would not discount Sunderland and Stoke City to cost ManU some points, along the way, as well. But all these become important only if Arsenal wins the rest of it's games.
Naijagunner
**irrespective of the team they manage.
Naijagunner
gronedrone: "United will need a serious spending spree if they want to stop us from winning the title next season" -- I'm always hearing this sort of prediction about Utd from gooners yet they always seem to be right at the top of the league come April/May even after not playing all that well throughout the season, after injury problems, etc. They always seem to do it, so I always dismiss such predictions. I forget who said this re Almunia: "he is not even considered good enough to be on the fringes of the Spain squad." -- neither is Valdez at Barca, doesn't stop him from having all those trophy medals. And of course Fat Sam will just roll over to Utd, he always does.
jaelle
As to Saturday's game...I'm up as everyone else is but, frankly, how many of you were surprised? I had very little hope of winning this game, I strongly believed it would be a draw. I truly would've been amazed had it been otherwise. Bham have given Chelsea and Utd difficult games, they've each dropped points there, I really didn't think we could do better than they. I hoped we could, esp. after Stoke, but I can honestly say that I was less disappointed than many gooners were because it's what I expected. Esp. once I saw which referee would officiate, I never expect a good performance from him for any of our games. That said, I too was gutted because the result forced me to wake up and realize that dreaming of a perfect win record until the end of the season with injuries mounting, tough CL games coming up, and a tough game like Bham away was just too much to ask.
jaelle
My #1 concern right now is Almunia's mental state because we need him on point for the rest of the season. I'm sure he's feeling down right now and fans can't show him that they pour all the blame on him, not right now. I agree entirely that this was a team failure--the inability to take easy chances and score clinically was just as if not more blameworthy. And ultimately I don't blame Almunia -- he is what he is, a decent keeper, nothing more than that. What continues to amaze me is that a world class manager like Arsene Wenger could believe that he was ever good enuf to be our #1 on a permanent basis. And then there's Arshavin's recent performances -- I know he has fitness problems, he often says he can't breathe during games. But he's got to sort himself out.
jaelle
 

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