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It’s not the end of the world, is it?

Four years and two days ago, we faced Chelsea in Carling Cup final at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, losing 2-1 on a late Drogba goal. That was our first season at the Emirates, and I certainly did not think we would wait four years to reach another cup final. But we did, and today was a golden opportunity to secure the first trophy of the Emirates era. Looking around the blogs the last few days, I could sense confidence, but also apprehension – which I shared.

Yes, we were certainly favored to beat Birmingham City today – but Eck’s side is a team that who made the final on merit and I knew would be there to win the cup, not just make the numbers up.

As it was, Arsene picked the strongest team available at the time – perhaps some would argue with Rosicky starting in Cesc’s place, but I understood Arsene probably wanted the former’s experience, and preferred to move Samir into a more direct support role. Cesc and Theo were clearly big losses to the team, but Birmingham had key absences as well, such as Hleb and Dann.

We lined up as Szczesny, Sagna, JD, Kos, Clichy, Jack, Song, Rosicky, Samir, Robin, and Arshavin.

Our bench consisted of Al, Gibbs, Squil, Eboue, Denilson, Chamakh, and Nik. A squad of eighteen players which, in my opinion, should have been more than enough to overcome the absence of our Captain and Theo.

Yes, Rosicky played poorly, but he was hardly the only one. I expected far, far better from the likes of Song and our central defenders. If Arsene made a mistake and I think there are arguments either way, it was probably in omitting Diaby from the squad. Yes, he was recently injured, but this was hardly a long layoff. He had an excellent performance at Newcastle, right up to his ill-advised sending off, so I think he could have played today. He was certainly more in-form than Rosicky. Being that Arsene chose Rosicky and Denilson in the squad, there was no room for Diaby. We have seen too many times that pairing Song and Denilson stifles and inhibits the midfield. So of either Rosicky or Denilson, I would have started Rosicky also.

Before I discuss how the events unfolded, allow me to offer my congratulations to Birmingham City FC. I think they handled the occasion far better than us, played better when it counted, and took their chances – in short, I call them worthy winners of this trophy. They were extremely hard done by the linesman who wrongly called Bowyer offside in the first couple of minutes, but they did not seem to let that bother them and took the lead. And when we equalized and then threatened to overrun them in the latter stages of the second half, they stayed calm, held firm and took their chance when it came. I saw no dirty play, no persistent fouling, and no “anti-football” – rather a team considered heavy underdogs who were not going to sell themselves short. There is a lesson in here for us and our players, if we are willing to heed and learn…

Birmingham started the better of the two sides, keeping the ball and moving it with confidence. Only two minutes in, we had a huge let-off when Bowyer went clean through. Szczesny brought him down as the latter tried to round him, and our keeper should have been sent off with a penalty conceded. But the linesman…err…”referee’s assistant” wrongly flagged Bowyer offside – he was clearly onside, it was not even close.

This was the kind of call that would have led me to put my fist through a wall if it went against us, so I fully understand the Birmingham players and supporters sense of injustice. They controlled the first few minutes, with Gardner producing their first shot – which went wide – shortly after the blown call. Gradually, we began to get into the game, started winning the ball and getting attacking moves going.

Arshavin created our first chance and we really should have scored from it; he forced Foster to save from 12 yards out, but it appeared he could have placed his shot a bit better. We forced a couple of corners, but couldn’t do much with them, although JD did head one over the bar.

With a quarter of an hour complete, Szczesny made his first save, collecting a shot from Fahey. Birmingham enjoyed a short spell of better possession, and worked hard in midfield to deny us space and time on the ball. Just before the half hour mark, Birmingham opened the scoring through a corner. The ball was delivered into our area at pace, Johnson headed it to a completely unmarked Zigic, who easily beat Szczesny to score for the second time against us this season. We had certainly been warned about Zigic’s aerial prowess, so letting him get so free at this set piece was poor, poor play all around.

The goal stung us into action and Robin had a chance to immediately equalize, but sent Sagna’s cross wide of the post. Ashavin then forced Foster to punch his cross away. Kos then went in hard on Bowyer, who needed a bit of treatment.

Just a minute later, Gardner put Zigic through, who could not control the ball, allowing Szczesny to smother. We should have been 2-0 down at that point. Birmingham kept the pressure on, with JD blocking Larsson’s low shot. Kos brought Bowyer down with a late challenge and was rightly booked this time.

With our side in disarray and looking certain to fall further behind, we conjured up the equalizer. Out of nowhere, Jack rattled Foster’s crossbar with a powerful shot from the edge of the area. The ball broke for Arshavin, who crossed it back into the area, where Robin converted a brilliant volley to bring us level. Unfortunately, he hurt his knee colliding – accidentally – Johnson in the move leading to the equalizer. Robin was able to continue after a short spell of treatment, and Larsson was next into the book for complaining about a free kick to Arsenal. The 45 minutes ended with Bowyer needing more treatment – there was no bad challenge on this occasion.

Right at the end of the four stoppage minutes, Samir almost scored with a swerving drive that forced Foster into a difficult save.

So we went into the break level after having been second best for much of the half. We did finish stronger and I was hoping that would give us the momentum and confidence to push on and take control of this match. As expected, no changes were made at the break.

We started the second half much better than the first, keeping the ball and creating a couple of chances. Rosicky shot wide after good work from Sagna and we forced an early corner that we couldn’t convert. Clichy became the second Arsenal player booked after bringing Fahey down, and Birmingham won a corner from the free kick, but couldn’t convert.

Just before the hour mark, they almost went ahead as Fahey struck the post from the just inside the area. We traded corners and free kicks with Birmingham for a short spell, with neither side creating any clear-cut chances. Twenty minutes from time, an injured Robin was withdrawn for Bendtner .

We then applied a sustained spell of pressure, Samir forcing Foster into a smart save, and drilling a shot off the Birmingham goalkeeper’s face from a quick break. Nik then got into the act working Foster with a strong effort from the left flank. Arsene made his second change with Chamakh replacing Arshavin.

We continued to dominate, and Samir brought the best out of Foster with another fine effort. At this point, it appeared that there would only be one winner, as we dominated the ball and were creating all the chances. Birmingham continued to hold out, and with five minutes of normal time left, Eck brought Martins on for Fahey.

With two minutes to go, Rosicky had the chance to shoot from the edge of the area, but opted for a pass to no one and what might have been a chance evaporated.

Just a few seconds later, disaster struck in our area. Szczesny and Kos both hesitated on a nothing ball into our box, with neither taking charge to clear it. It was served up to Martins on a plate, and he duly tapped it into our goal. Our young keeper and defender will be pilloried for this, but I have seen plenty of ‘keepers/defenders do similar – the difference is that on this occasion, the stakes were huge when it happened.

While the manner of the goal was hugely disappointing, Birmingham still needed to put the ball in to the net. If the positions had been reversed and we profited from a similar defensive mistake, would we give the goal back?

As painful as it was to see this moment unfold, I cannot begrudge Birmingham the goal in any way – they did what they had to do. We had four minutes of stoppage time – Birmingham even had a couple of players booked in that spell – but we were closer to going 3-1 down with Szczesny saving after Martins looked like he might have been through, than we were to equalizing again.

The final whistle went, Birmingham celebrated their cup win, and we reflected on another missed opportunity.

All I want now is for our players to come out for the next and subsequent matches determined to put this right. We lost today, the cup is headed to St Andrews – it’s done, and there is nothing we can do about it.

The big unknown will be how our players react – they were clearly shattered at the end. Previous seasons have shown our sides to be unable to shake off devastating defeats, leading to losing runs…

Our annual injury bug is belatedly hitting, with the news that Robin may be on the sidelines for a while again – so the task will be that much harder. But what choice do we have? All is not lost – we are still in three competitions and still have a chance of winning all of them. I will concede that looked highly unlikely before today, and looks even less likely now, but our players should at least give it a go.

It starts on Wednesday, with the FA Cup replay against Leyton Orient. Barry Hearn has had plenty to say – both about our side and manager – since last Sunday’s tie. How about we stuff them and shut him up? How about we take the pitch wanting to make someone pay for what happened yesterday?

I cannot remember the last time we seemed to play with an edge, where we wanted to go out and absolutely pulverize someone – and make teams afraid of us. I would not make wholesale changes for this match, either. I think some of our starters need a quick turnaround to help them get over this match.

Sunderland looms on the weekend, and then over to Camp Nou, so we are going to have to get the disappointment out of our system quickly. Arsene will decide who plays Wednesday, but for me, it is imperative that we give some starters – Szczesny and Kos among them – an opportunity to get this out of their systems quickly.

At this moment, rebuilding morale and confidence among our starters and responding immediately with a statement win are far more important that providing rest to members of our starting eleven.

At least that is how I see it…

Written by Oliver

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331 comments on “It’s not the end of the world, is it?

  1. Clearly not good enough. Something needs to be done…Oh wait, I know…….GET A TOP FUCKING CLASS CENTRAL DEFENDER IN WENGER.

  2. morning…

    sorry it’s late, problems with the site today…

  3. Hi Will…

    Add a top midfielder too – Song was not at the races yesterday…

  4. Iv’e always believed that this would be the day the players stood up, believed they would finally win…

    But when it came to it, we lacked bottle, commitment and attitude….

    Where was the fight? Where was all the so called collective desire and passion??

  5. Of coure it aint the end of the world. However it could derail the gunners season. I see pralleles to the Feb 2008 season after Eduardo was deliberately injured thereby causing the gunner to self destruct/destroy.
    I f Wenger aint careful with hi team ,the gunners could end trophyless. These are early days. We will know where the gunners are heading after the cl and FA matche are played.

  6. A4E – Hi and that is what matters right now, will they have it in them to bounce back?

    I doubt it, they couldn’t do it yesterday when they were down…

  7. Morning all,
    excellent write up Oliver,allmost as painfull as watching the match yesterday, if you know what i mean. Disappointed beyond belief, but hadnt realy commented on this game prior to playing, as i had my reservations, i had hoped that the gut feelings were going to be wrong but unfortunitly not, i dont like to point the finger at any given player, but i have in the past given my feelings over our young keeper, i was expecting mistakes but was hopefull that it wouldnt come in a final, visions of Leyman came flooding back, and without the incompetant involvement of the officials we would have been down to ten men again, to get a let off like that is very rare unless your from Manchester, i had hoped that would be the only one but to see him rush out and intersect a ball from the wing made my heart skip a beat, any ball played passed him and it could have been No2, i felt he had had his luck for the day, and it turned out i was right and when you call to your defender for the ball and he leaves it, you have to be prepared to collect it goal No2. Things happen for certain keepers that stay in your mind for ever and this is one of them, the lad has probably got a great future with us but that mistake will be in my memory forever he will get over it and forget, it sadly i wont.

  8. HORROR :|

    Well i haven’t read your post yet Oliver but if the title will suggest anything it is that you are optimistic, but then maybe i should just go ahead and read your post first .
    But before i do , i will just say Mr Wenger got it all wrong again.

    The selection was wrong, formation was wrong and i would have risked Fabregas for at least 15minutes.

    I dont care about Champions league i dont care about beating Barca again(we broke the jinx i was happy with that).

    This was a trophy and we lost to a team that might be fighting for relagation soon if West Ham’s revival is anything to go by.

    Wenger has lost his Mojo – Sad Sad sad

  9. Too many sub-standard performances, the goalkeeper centre back situation has bitten Wenger in the arse….buy cheap buy twice!!

  10. take a chill pill guys..it was a “freak goal”-they could play another 100 times & it wouldn’t occur.as arseblogger pointed out.shit happens.there has been plenty of red hot favourites in cup comp over the years yet they’ve f***d up.excepy everyone buys into the sky,media shit of no trophies in six years-big deal!try waiting 20 years & counting for a title-liverpool.try waiting 50 & counting-the spuds !the trophies WILL COME & SOON.trust me..

  11. Morning Steve, SD, Lee and King gooner…

    Steve, you have said about Chesney before, i blame both he and kos for the goal, chesney should have made it very clear he was coming out to collect an easy ball, kos should have sent it to row z….

  12. SD, that crop of players out there should have won, they bottled it and if we are all about one person, ie cesc then wenger needs to wake up and take a look at some of the others…

  13. Lee – spot on….

  14. It’s getting fcking boring, keep talking about the same things over and over: GK , CB ,DM & CF not good enough, cover not good enough or too injury prone……

  15. And why the heck does wenger fail to see what we all do??

  16. I dont believe a good team goes bad overnight, sure we have passengers but we are no different to all of the other teams, i admit this is a huge disapointment but not the end of the world,this is not the first time we have been gutted by our players performances and it wont be the last, i’ve dug out the keeper but the result was everybodies fault, Wenger as well, Judgeing by our half year profits and estimated earnings for the second half of the year, new contracts for players that are on fairly long ones allready will eat into any budget we may or may not of had, and will not produce to many new players in the near future, so we have what we have. The players will have to stand up and pull together, they put us into this position and they have got to play the season out knowing that the best chance of winning the trophy they are all so desperate for, has passed them by, are they man enough to fight the rest of the season out, i like to think yes, i like to feel they have still got belief and i like to believe they will win us somthing. so nows the time to see if this band of players have got it or not.

  17. Morning all.good read oliver.i admire you for having the strength to write that report after witnessing that horror show.sadly i can’t see a way back.it will be freefall from here.we’ll get KOed in the FA and CL next week.i just hope we maintain 2nd and build on it next season.am really heartbroken…

  18. Aw has lost 5 out of 9 finals he has been involved in.

  19. We Arsenal fans have had to endure the most cruel final defeats.i don’t think there are fans who suffer more than we do.we deserve a trophy and a big one.losing is understandable but the manner in which we lose is gut-wrenching…

  20. This team will always fail when it matter the most,it is in its dna.If you cant get up to slay Brum in a fianl you have waited for for so long there really is no hope and if you believe we are just gonna run over Orient wednesday you havnt been paying attention for the last 5 seasons.Remember what happened after we lost 2-1 against Chelsea in the carling cup final,our season totally collapsed,remember that defining 2-2 at Birmiingham,we still had a fair chance of doing manure but we totally collapsed in a heap,they are so mentally weak it beggars belief.

  21. good comment Steve, i’d like to think they can re-group but i am not so sure they can…

  22. When will this heartache end…?
    I am still gutted and the rest of the season looks quite uncertain. If we cant beat the likes of Birmingham in a cup final then when is it going to happen? No disrespect to Birmingham, they came with a simple plan: aim at Zigic defend as a unit. We’ve beaten these guys twice this season for goodness sakes!! We lacked a leader last night and we…..I’m just too darn gutted, sorry if I dont have any words of encouragements.. :(

  23. morning KT, the next two games will be the telling sign of what we are made of….

    it will also be a test of what wenger has in him to get these players up for wednesday…

  24. Thats what naffs me off too Danish, what else do they need to be up for a game, its a bloody final at wembley, should have been enough…

    same old same old, they thought they had to just turn up to be winners, it was a joke…..

    but i’m not laughing….

  25. Hi T-buzz, all the time wenger sticks to his ‘principles’, it will never end…..

  26. Oliver – how rude of me, thank you for the post, another excellent read….

  27. Granted i can understand your apprehensions, but if we can get over the Orient game, we will have the best team in Spain to conquer at Camp Nue the best team in England at the moment in Utd, beat them and our credibility is back and rareing to go. lose those games and the Champions league next year will not be an option.

  28. Oh deep joy, they have announced the profits – no news on robin though…..

    * Operating profit (before depreciation and player trading) of £12.6m (2009 – £29.3m) with, as expected, a reduction in the contribution from property.
    * Sale of 50 apartments at Highbury Square generated revenue of £22.5m (2009 – 261 apartments sales generated £96.6m) and an operating profit from property of £3.3m (2009 – £11.3m) reflecting the lower number of apartments now left for sale.
    * Property business continues to be debt free with all sales contributing to Group’s cash position of £110.4m (2009 – £101.0m).
    * Further significant commitment to a determined policy of investing in the team with the re-signing of several key first team players and Arsène Wenger as the Club’s Manager.
    * Football operating profits (before depreciation and player trading) of £9.3 million (2009 – £18.0m) reflect this increased investment in football wages and also timing differences in the number of home games played (2010 – 10 home matches in first half of 28 matches, so far confirmed, for full year / 2009 – 12 of 27).
    * Significantly reduced profit on player sales of £4.0m compared to £33.9m for the prior year.
    * Changes in property and player trading, which are essentially one-offs, impact overall result for the period – loss after tax of £2.5m (2009 – profit of £29.2m).

    Commenting on the interim results, Peter Hill-Wood, non-executive chairman, said:

    “This is a robust performance in the current climate and is where we expected to be at this stage of the financial year and at this stage in our longer term development plans for the growth of the Club.

    The Club is exactly where we want to be, competing for trophies across the closing months of the season. I know that Arsène Wenger and his players will remain focused and will be appreciative of the fantastic support they get from our fans around the world.

    I also want you to know that we are proud of the fact we continue to compete at the highest level while staying true to our principles. We continue to operate as a self-funding Club. This brings its own challenges in an increasingly competitive environment but provides the platform for a secure and positive long term future.”

  29. Steve, we will have to be at our best to beat Orient and Sunderland first….

  30. Assertations that the players “weren’t up for it” are simply total bollocks. B’ham played pretty well but we battered them even without ever playing our A game. Just look at the numbers.

    Gutted to lose but the real test of whether this team has grown will be from the response in the next few games. If heads go down & we blow the league & both cups in the next fortnight I’ll be far more annoyed than by losing one final.

    Also, interesting how since yesterday the Carling Cup has become a “major” trophy as opposed to the piss poor but of metal if we’d have won!

  31. Rico, i we can’t beat Orient forget the others

  32. Oh great, we are the best team in the world at making money. We can all go to bed and snuggle with that.

  33. pls can somebody teel wenger to stop playiny rosicky in our matchs just go back check the result matchs he has been involve this season,any time he plays our team dont perform

  34. At the beginning of the season i said we’ll win nothing.the team started playing better and started to get my hopes up only for them to go on and do that.i will never ever be drawn into false dawns again.id rather be pessimistic from now on.why does it happen to us?

  35. maybe we should bin our Arsenal shirts and wear RBS shirts…

  36. I think rvp is not badly injured.Aw probably just wanted to protect him for the CL and PL.he thought chamakh and bendy could finish them off and it backfired in spectacular fashion.

  37. Listen to the moaners on here. No wonder Arsenal fans get abuse. You’re crying like a bunch of girls. Any team can lose a final, stop p1ssing your draws and get over it.

  38. Lee we’d be better off supporting banks from now on.

  39. The second string are not good enough, how often does Wenger need to see them play to get this?

  40. Well i will suggest this to anybody that is gutted;
    Just go and watch our Champions League game against Barca , it will put a smile on your face.

    But as for the rest of the season, we might has well just forget it. Fergusson will be laughing now because he knows we are demoralised now.

    Wenger should be ashamed really- we have witnessed 3 cup finals in 5years and we have lost all 3. Terrible.

  41. morning all…this morning it feels even worse, if possible…

    i am not happy with my effort on the post. i focused too much on summarizing the events and utterly failed to articulate some points that resonated with me last night…

    – the weight of expectations appeared too much for our players. in short, i think they froze. we appeared shorn of leadership, tense and nervous throughout, and never really got going. brum played better than i expected, but certainly we should have been able to see them off. but our players didn’t rise to the occasion, while brum’s did. now that we have failed to win this cup – one that we certainly should have won – it will only get more difficult.

    – our players are effusively apologizing for yesterday – sagna went so far as to deem himself “ashamed”…don’t worry about the apologies – take it on the chin and focus on putting this right. public self-flagellation will not help change things. learn from this and improve, don’t publicly crucify yourselves…we have another match on wednesday, there is no time to sit around feeling sorry for ourselves…

    impossible to know how the players will react. past history has shown the players take such defeats hard. i can only hope that this time we will be strong enough to shrug this off and resume winning – but i honestly don’t which way it will go…

    this cup may be the most lightly regarded of the four we compete for, but our players have to win something at some point. this is the only domestic trophy arsene has yet to win, and now that this group has failed here, it won’t get any easier…

  42. Cesc has been a magnificent player for us.we need him him right now as captain more than ever.however i wouldn’t begrudge him if he wanted to leave as this horror shows have become some sort of norm for us.if he finds it in him to want to stay i’ll be very happy but if he doesn’t good luck to him.

  43. Nice post Oliver it’s not the end of the world most definitely, we can still win a trophy a more worthy 1.

    We must win against the Orient to lift our spirits up.
    We lacked a leader yesterday.

    One major tactical flaw yesterday was introducing Chamakh for Arshavin, then on we didn’t play well Nasri was looking for himself to score.
    Did any1 saw Nasri pass a ball in the penalty area in the final third?

  44. Stef at least nasri was trying something other than tiki taka.

  45. Am afraid stef we won’t win any of the remining trophies.we’ll get KOed next week in both FA (if we get part orient) and CL due to the psychological blow we suffered yesterday.the mancs will then use that momentum to win the PL.

  46. k…if that is what happens, then so be it. we are not there yet. i am gutted about yesterday’s result and the players clearly are too. but that does not automatically mean history will repeat itself and we fall apart, as with previous seasons. i will hold out hope that we can regroup and still win something. i may well be proved wrong, but until that happens i’ll continue to hope…

  47. History is written by the victors and not the vanquished. I haven’t here the total of finals at – FA Cup, League Cup and European Cups – but the winning percentage is low. Also I do not have the number of times we go up to the “podium” ever since the League. But drawing a parallel, Liverpool became famous in Europe to have won all the finals in which he participated (I do not think I’m wrong). Playing some evil, won by penalties, unfairly in another, it does not matter, he won. And in “statistics”does not appear the losers.
    There is a club that took forever to get something. Birmigham, I think that was one. Even the most prestigious for a country, sometimes it takes an eternity. In Portugal, Porto was almost 20 years to win a championship (here there were several reasons …). Sporting had 18. Almost a generation that did not see his club win a championship but always appear with the candidate. I will not talk about the game, because I think that AW looked too much for your little game and not the opponent. Commentators said that in 10 matches (finals?) Arsenal won 9 and 1 BC. I do not think so, at this time. Ahead.
    M city lost points. MU has two decisive games. If they win is almost champion because of the rapidly approaching 70 points. If they have got 80 points, they will be the champions. We will again have to reshape the team for the Orient.
    I do not understand why all the fans yesterday was gone. The vitality of a club it is also seen at times less good. More than ever, it was necessary solidarity. For even if we won, we would not get rid of the penalty of expulsion and not marred by refereeing error.

  48. Steve – you are right re orient…

    morning oliver – blame me for the post, sorry if i missed some crucial points out :(

  49. What about this for optimism ‘the only thing to regret about today is that when we look back at the end of the season to realise it would have completed the quadruple’…

  50. no rico, it is all on me…it was over-long, incoherent, and i gave you absolutely no mechanism to identify the point i thought were important…like our players yesterday, i think i can do much, much better…

  51. Oliver i admire your optimism.that loss for me seemed like the final straw.i don’t think we’re strong enough to get ourselves out of this one.i just hope we maintain 2nd and not to lose to the spuds later on in tie season.

  52. oliver – ok but don’t be so hard on yourself – how you write after such a dismal display amazes me…

    anyway, did you guys see Sagna’s twitter comment?

  53. k, odds are against it certainly – especially based upon our previous. but maybe…just maybe…the players will respond this time. wednesday will show us something. barry hearn has been running his mouth since the fixture at brisbane road, so i won’t mind at all if we take our frustrations on out them.

  54. rico, if you are talking about his “ashamed” one, that accomplishes nothing…we know the players feel bad, there is no need for this public outpouring of grief from the players…every minute they spend apologizing for yesterday is minute their attention is not on putting things right on wednesday.

  55. Sorry SD but the Barca game can kiss my arse. We need to win something and this squad will not.

  56. Rico i saw his tweet of how ashamed he was.he should be.all the messages we have received from rival fans should be directed to their Ipads for them to know how bad the last few hours have been.

  57. i disagree a tad, i think it shows he cares and felt for us fans…

    i just wonder how many players that played yesterday are really hurt by that defeat…

    i am…..

  58. KT, that’s not a bad idea, they will still pick up a mighty wage though won’t they…

  59. I wonder if wenger has taken us as far as he can??

  60. It just gets better…Rooney will face no action for elbowing an opponent.

  61. i cannot believe that KT, gutless FA – same old same old…. i bet if that had been one of ours it would be oh so different!

  62. Clattenburg must be in Fergies pocket too then…..

  63. we’re all hurt…we can all see how hurt the players were by losing…but it is getting to the point where the players are wallowing in self-pity…we don’t have time for that – we keep hearing “i’m sorry…i’m sorry…i’m sorry” from these players…and we wonder why they have not been able to immediately recover from bad losses?

  64. i doubt they are training today oliver….

  65. i have to go off for a while…. back later..

  66. I felt very sory for little Wilshere- he couldn’t stop crying.He was one of our few good players(if there was any) yesterday.

  67. If fabianski had commited that error he would have been crucified.i also feel sorry for kozzer.every blunder he seems to commit gets punished unlike gallas/toure/vermy.

  68. SD I hope jack uses that pain to drive him on to greater things.

  69. and now we have nobodies like craig gardner spouting off about how “petrified” our side was yesterday? they deserved to win so now it’s time to be insulting, is it? give it a rest and crawl back under your rock, craig – nobody will remember your name tomorrow…

  70. who pushed kozzer on the back of the head, after the fck up that led to the goal…?

  71. lee, i am told it was barry ferguson, one of eck’s former rangers…jack had a pop about that one on twitter this morning.

  72. Now dont let us be sad loosers by trying to find out who pushed Kozzer on the head.

  73. Just was curious who it was…not a sad loser, the better team won on the day..the end!

  74. Well Lee,i guess it is not good to kick a man when he is down.
    It probably just shows the gap in class btw the 2 teams but our class in play and behaviour didn’t win that day.

  75. Rival fans are having a field day.it has been terrible!i hope Aw and the team make it up to us now…but they probably will collapse.

  76. good morning everyone. i guess like everyone else i am still gutted, depressed, etc. its really interesting. 1 ago week we had a shot at 4 throphies now in the space of 1 week we might be out of all four, bummer.

  77. Class-les act, but hey ho…as has been pointed out earlier our next few matches will be season defining, i just hope we can pull together and prove all the doubters wrong!! Come on you Gunners!!!!

  78. Beware the wounded bear!!!!

  79. Rosicky is one of my favourite players but am afraid his time at top level is coming to a close.its such a shame to see such a good player struggling.

  80. Anyone heard the latest on Rvp?

  81. Hello Gooners. The 70-71 team went through the Swindon debarcle, but came back to win the Fairs Cup and Double.
    The Graham title sides suffered their own debarcle against Luton, but they came back stronger to win two League Titles and 3 major cup finals.
    Even Wengers earlier team had it’s debarcles, Galatasaray 2000 & Liverpool 2001, but they came back to win another Double 2002 and then became Invincible in 2004.
    This group of players needs to prove to us, the fans, but more importantly themselves, that they are not chokers. That’s also the job of Wenger and his coaches. They also have a lot left in this season to do just that!
    Superb post Oliver, yet again.
    Lee,KT,Will. I so share your pain.

  82. not yet… rumors should leak out later today, probably nothing official until tomorrow. i am not holding my breath…

  83. Time for Wenger to earn his salary and the on the pitch part far more important than what he earns the club off the pitch, the talk of how the players react and pick themselves up is all well and good bit in reality its down to the manager to get them right mentally and to pick them up to make sure they don’t fuck up the rest of teh season like thy have previously, have lessons been learned??? are we stonger and have more spirit…? We’re soon about to find out.

  84. Hi Kev..Rooney gets away with the weekend’s assault….what a joke the f.a!!

  85. God help us the day Fabregas leaves Arsenal.

  86. Oliver, well done my friend writing such a good piece, after last night I was spitting nails, how you managed to write an article is full credit.

  87. Lee, the FA are bottlers but this time we have to blame Clattenburg. Mind you the FA don’t mind hiding behind him. Any organiation with some balls would have simply told Clattenburg that his opinion isn’t good enough and that they’re going to act. FA, balls, never happens does it?

  88. Wath, your earlier comment about wenger and motivating the team after sunday’s sh1t-show is spot on…

  89. thanks wath…looking at the post, i think it is actually poor…i am very disappointed with how it looks this morning – i gave rico something rambling and incoherent, and was not able to express my actual thoughts on this…

  90. Yeah, WATH is spot on {hi mate} but it also comes from the players themselves. McLintock didn’t need Don Howe to gee him up, Adams went through some right crap, but came back stronger. I’m looking at Wilshere he’s an absolute diamond, he won’t sulk. 18 years old! Some of our older players should be ashamed of themselves. But don’t be sorry, be angry! And make sure it doesn’t happen again. Motivate yourself…

  91. Blimey Oliver, if that was a ramble you’ll blow us away when you get it right…

  92. Don’t get mad get even!!

  93. You said it Lee

  94. Agreed Akev but we seem to be a bunch of pampered softies, very few will gee themselves up most need a rocket up their own arses, Jack is a one in a million the rest I have huge doubts over. As for Sagna, I don’t think he is full of self pity I genuinely believe he felt ashamed of the way we lost and played and twitter was a way to say sorry to the fans simple as that. Least it showed he cared and he was straight the the point and fair play 2 him.

  95. Oliver, if i’d of done a match report at 2am this morning Rico would never of been able to of shown 3/4 of it on the net…! You did well mate…!

  96. Lee i disagree the best team won on the day mate, they had a game plan they stuck to it they played to our weaknesses BUT we gave them a poor one goal lead we failed to convert numerous chances ( as usual ) and then gave them an open goal, we fucked up we gave them the game they hardly won it did they fella…!

    Wenger needs to find a solution and real quick….! Also i’d like to know what is all this tracksuit and earphones turning upto a cup final, we looked like rag n bone men dressed like homeboys from the slums, what kind of crap is that, We’re The Arsenal, where were the suits where was the Cup inal spirit and making something of the occasion not just turning up dressed like a sunday afternoon game over the park…! Very wrong…!

  97. WATH, Sagna has been excellent this season, i wouldn’t blame him at all for yesterday. To me Song was very disappointing, slow, ponderous, but it’s not fair to pick out individuals, two defensive cock-ups mate.

  98. WATH, wasn’t it Bertie Mee who said to players “Remember who you are and who you represent”.

  99. Did we really loose or are we to play the Carling Cup next week ?

  100. AKev, always remember Rocky saying, remember who you are what you are and WHO your represent…! It may well of come from Bertie Mee but to see them get off the coach dressed like that yesterday really pissed me off, sounds pedantic but where’s our Class gone…? How can you get a team up for it when it’s no different from any other game, well it was, it was a cup final so treat it like one and get ya suits on and show Arsenal class…! Piss poor in my book.

  101. Wath, i just think they looked hungrier for it than us,and when you lose RVP and replace him with NB…

  102. Got to agree with ya WATH, EPL games it’s ok, but a cup final, i think a bit of effort doesn’t do any harm. But Wengers probably got some psychological reason for the dress code.

  103. SD, whatever you do, DON’T turn up at Wembley this Sunday in an Arsenal shirt…lol

  104. Lee, I don’t disagree with the fact they were up for it, never gave up, kept trying, stuck to a game plan but they def didnt deserve to win when they hardly created much and we gave them the winner after missing chance after chance at the other end but then again how often do we say that…! far to often, we were the better team created more and lost… that just about sums this team up. AKev, Wenger needs to get a kick up the arse mate and told to make sure the players represent the club in a proper manner at a cup final…!.

  105. WATH it all comes down from the top mate.

  106. Agreed AKev and who exactly is gonna slap Wengers wrists… Noone they all to up his backside…!

  107. You know, i gotta say, once again how we missed having a player like Eduardo in the squad. Imagine RVP being replaced by Eddy, how ironic considering the opposition?

  108. allezkev ! if you asked me at 12pm on Sunday that we were going to loose , i will say no .
    But 30minutes into the game i just got really really worried.
    But the winning goal was just a shocker.
    I have to find a substitute hubby, this football is definitely not doing us any good.

    What they didn’t realised yesterday was that Birmingham would have still clapped , and gave a lap of hour to their fans had they lost .They wouldn’t be really gutted , they would have said at least it was Arsenal they lost too.

    But no that didn’t happen they won.

    I think the praises the press was giving them got into their heads and it seems almost all Arsenal player are twitting now a days – they are not living in the real world anymore and they think they are invincible.

    Arsenal needs an ex player as an assistant coach that can straighten this guys up. They need some hard scolding really.

  109. SD, it has to come from within mate. Take Rooney, whatever we may or may not think about him, you never have to motivate him. But as WATH wrote, some of our players are ‘softies’, maybe too many? When things are going wrong, i look at whose up for the fight and who disappears. Wilshere was up for it, Sagna was up for it, RVP was up for it….

  110. SD, it won’t happen, Wenger surrounds himself with yes men, if you question his ideas or disagree with him your out, look at Keown…! Back to his ego and stubbornness yet again.

  111. AKev, spot on as well cos we still crying out for a reliable goalscorer, as shown yesterday we also still need a proper ballwinner in central midfield as well cos Song had a very off game but he’s played the last 3/4 games on the trot. My mate said to me last night 1-11 we as good as anyone 12-25 is where we fall away and are lacking big time.

  112. why the fck can’t wenger see or is it he doesn’t want to see it….because if it’s the latter we’re in sh1t street!!

  113. WATH, i’m still hopefull that Frimpong can eventually be that ballwinner. I really can’t see Wenger going out and spending zillions, so i look to our promising youngsters for future reinforcements. Maybe there’s 2 or 3 more with Jack’s mentality waiting to step up next season?

  114. Wenger is stubborn.

    He seems to always find words , i could not believe he could give an interview yesterday.

    When he did, he was still talking about how destroyed his players were, as if soliciting for sympathy for them.
    I don’t care if they were crushed by the dressing room door, i was expecting him to say his players didn’t play well at all and were rubbish on the day.

    When is Wenger going to lay it on this guys ?

  115. Lee, i’m really hopefull about a few of our youngsters, yes i know it’s the same old same old, but Miyaichi looks really good, for one, and Lansbury looks good to me, then Bartley is promising. Shoot me down if you like, but i’m optimistic about these lads.

  116. Spot on SD all Wenger wanted to do was blame fixtures and injuries instead of saying we failed to deal with the long balls and we didn’t compete enough to stamp our quality on the game and to take control. AKev, if only we had 11 with Jacks attitude and heart…!

  117. I honestly don’t know how oliver could write up such a good post.i wouldn’t be able to do that after that horror show.don’t be too hard on yourself oliver.

  118. Me too Kev, but the squad needs some proven players in key positions, add to that the youngsters and we’re back on track. We need a summer clear out of under-performers etc that’ll raise a few quid to reinvest in the squad…

  119. WATH, maybe we should send all our youngsters to Bolton for a year, just to finish them off. To be honest i was disappointed when Vela choose West Brom instead of Bolton.

  120. For all of our attacking talent we really don’t click without cesc as he is the brain of the team.he has become such an integral player for us.i really hope when he leaves jack/ramsey can have the same level of influence because if not the past 5 years will have been for nothing.

  121. Lee mate, it’s not gonna happen! Almunia is the only one who i’m certain will leave. Wenger has 6 players whose contracts expire in June 2012 {i believe}, Nasri, Arshavin, Clichy, Djourou, Rosicky, Fabianski. Wenger will focus on signing them up, or most of them, this summer etc.

  122. Attacking talent is one thing KT but bottom line is we played with one striker yesterday !!! AA did very little Nas n Jack tried allsorts and nothing came off, Rosicky tried to walk the ball in or pass to space in the pen box which created nothing so Cesc would of struggled as well, we need to stop this 4-3-3 crap which is actually 4-5-1 which I’ve said for ages and get back to a proper 4-4-2 with two strikers on the pitch otherwise the one gets no support what so ever and we always outnumbered.

  123. Rvp showed again why we are always reluctant to rely on him.he is a brilliant player no doubt.that volley he scored was a beauty and very difficult to execute.he has carried our goal threat for 2 months but now if he is out for an extended period we’ll have to look for a replacement.make no mistake i adore him to bits but he cannot keep teasing us of his full potential before getting injured again.

  124. kev, who would your outs/ins be?

  125. I’d be letting three of them go Akev….!

  126. Well as we’ve all been discussing the lack of leaders Thomas Vermaelen will make a difference, and KT mentioned Ramsey, now there’s a big player for ya Lee, the cavalry is coming…

  127. Go on WATH, you first, lol

  128. WATH our 4-3-3 works brilliantly when we have our best 11 with Theo Van Nasregas up top.its when we miss some of them that it doesn’t.

  129. If rvp is out for a long time theo/AA/nasri/cesc will have to start scoring regularly as he has been the lone scorer of our goals for 2 months now.

  130. KT, then the problem lies with the manager who then should realise that 4-3-3 only works some of the time and when some players are missing he needs tobe flexible enough to change the formation, it also only works KT against some teams not all…. Wengers school report reads “failed dismally”

  131. Lee… I would lose Almunia, Denilson, Eboue and Rosicky, all of them could be replaced from within, i think?

  132. You can feel jack is due a thunderbolt soon.that effort that came off the bar was just sublime.he needs one to go in and the rest will follow.

  133. i can’t believe came all the way from Birmingham to beat us here in London.
    They had to travel, change in weather and still beat us and they played sharper.

    I am off, Please let us all just blame Wenger.

  134. sorry wath and ktr7 you ins/outs as well please?

  135. If Wenger needs to really spend, then i think he needs another striker, KT has sumed up the weakness in that department. I like Benzema, but he’s expensive, i also like Wickham.

  136. AKev, I’d get rid of AA, Rosicky, Flappy and Almunia. As well as Denilson, Randall, Mannone, Hoyte, Watt, Traore and one or two other of the fringe players. Bring in a decent older Keeper as back up for Chez and to give him breaks as he grows and learns, quality centre back, hardman in midfield and a proper goalscorer…! Ramsey, Lansbury, Frimpong, Jet get to push on and I’d give Diaby one final yr to prove himself or he goes as well.

  137. Out:Denilson,Rosicky,Almunia.

  138. the squill gets the chop from me too…

  139. My apologies Bendtner can piss right off as well, I forgot abt him ;-)

  140. Id bring in Hazard to take in rosicky’s spot,promote mannone to 3rd choice GK and then promote frimpong to take denilson’s spot.AA to have 1 more year to allow Hazard to settle before letting him go.

  141. I forgot,traore,bendtner/chamakh,randall and hoyte can leave too.promote JET to 3rd choice striker.

  142. Afternoon guys and gals…

    Just off to catch up….

  143. Wath, bendtner is a given….this football lark interfering with his skiing season an all that!!

  144. Maybe he can become a pro downhill racer Lee ;-)

  145. Yes WATH get rid of Flappy as well, he’s always going to be an accident waiting to happen. Can’t disagree with anyone to be honest. Arshavin remains an enigma to me, i still like him.

  146. If Rvp had suffered knee ligament damage i guess we would have already been informed that he is undergoing surgery.lets cross our fingers and toes and hope its just a knock.

  147. Bendtner could make a great Nascar racer WATH…

  148. he wouldn’t get a helmet over that large cranium!!

  149. KT didn’t Hazard say recently that his game is better suited to Spain?

  150. AKev, I think AA is a great player but think he’s wasted the way we play, he has to be a 2nd striker for me as his aweness and technique is brilliant but wide left he’s a passenger and in a 4-3-3 you cant have passengers simple as that its why for me 4-3-3 is crap because we dont have the players to play that way, KT will disagree with me but thats my view.

  151. Lee, being special he’ll have to have a helmet specially made….! :-)

  152. Didn’t Wenger use him as a centre-forward last season WATH?

  153. AA that is!

  154. He aint a centre forward either is he Kev…?

  155. No mate, he certainly isn’t, but we didn’t have anyone else at the time, but i agree with you about his position. KT, what’s your spin on Arshavin?

  156. I agree with your list WATH, since you added Nik ;)

  157. Rico, who would you sign, if anyone?

  158. The squad is far to big with far to many average players earnign big salaries who are far to comfy in their positions, sounds a bit like our manager as well, big money and in a far to comfy position…!, Sell and promote from within BUT he must buy at least 2 world class players and then we’ll be a top top side if he refuses yet again then for me it would be time for him to move on…! thats yet another topic/argument/discussion

  159. WATH, any ideas on who you would like to see Wenger sign?

  160. Come on Lee, you as well, who would you sign?

  161. Good question kev

    Gary Cahill
    Scott Sinclair

    And an English holding midfielder from the Championship, one who is prepared to put a shift in….

  162. Back in a while I’ll think on those signings AKev….!

  163. I like Cahill Rico, but would ‘Old Le Scrooge’ pay the fee? Sinclair is an interesting one, never really thought of him. Good choices.

  164. I watched him at the weekend kev, he’s a dangerous player, the chavs have mucked up letting him go…

    I want us to have an English spine, some English grit kev..

    I’d go for an English keeper too but it would ‘kill’ Chesney…

  165. kev, no he wouldn’t he’s too bloody tight, he’d rather get two for the price he would cost….

  166. i don’t know who i would bring in off the top of my head, but there are some people who i think need to leave our club. i don’t think we have to make wholesale changes, but we need a shift in mindset in my opinion. more emphasis on accountability and responsibility, less on style and culture…i agree with wath that many in our squad are too comfortable, and this can result in an inability to handle pressure of occasions such as yesterday…

  167. Agree about an English spine, and i’m not being a ‘Little Englander’ either. But Rico i suspect that the ‘English’ will have to come from within the club.

  168. Cahill and Bencezma…as you pointed out Earlier Kev, Frimpong, Jet, Ramsey and Ryo all to come back…..

  169. We keep being linked with hazard too…

  170. Hopefully not Micky

  171. Like it Lee, can’t disagree mate, we also keep getting linked to Ajax players. At least you know what you’re getting from Ajax, quality and a bit of grit.

  172. Lee, haha, or Colin eh?

  173. Forget that Lee. Got it wrong, durr.

  174. kev, i think you are right about the english players and i’m fine with the likes of lansbury, frimpong, bartley etc – but what we lack is players who have ‘been there and done it’ too….

    oliver, i agree with wath too, far too many average players being kept on the books, how many do we have out on loan, 14?

  175. CB that’s TV’s pal no? You won’t go far wrong if he’s out the Tommy school of defending!!!

  176. I’d get Felliani from Everton, Really not sure about Cahill i like him but have a nagging doubt that he’s actually good enough, We could do worse than Johnson from Brum….! Again players like him and Cahill will put their body on the line but lack just a bit of quality, maybe asking for 2 much and get the players to spill blood and then the midfielders supply the quality. Lansbury, Frimpong and Aaron will def give us far more fight and attitude and commitment, thats a start, as for a goal scorer, they few and far between and far to many are overrated.

  177. we needed that Ajax grit yesterday, when is TV back….

    is it this week he plays in a reserve match?

  178. Sorry Lee I’m in and out the kitchen, must have been thinking of onions or something…

  179. Must have thinking of Colin Lee {what a berk!}, Rico, come and save me…

  180. WATH, thought Johnson had a great game yesterday.

  181. Not only that AKev but the fella can hardly walk and yet stays on the pitch to do his bit, can u imagine that being one of ours…. they’d be crying to come off the second it “hurt”….!

  182. Johnson, injured, on his last legs, totally exhausted….

    Did he give up??? No

    Good shout WATH…

    What about Bruce, sperm of Steve ;)

  183. WATH, great point mate. Again, look at Jack, kicked but never gives up or lays down.

  184. Jack is different kev, he’s arsenal, that’s why i can’t wait for these other english kids to break through…

    did cesc go on the pitch after the final whistle?? i went off out in the garden for a ‘moment’….

  185. I was gone by then Rico didnt see who went on the pitch and I dont care much to watch a replay either.

  186. I switched off about the same time you were leaving WATH, seen the pics of Eboue with Jack but nothing with cesc…..

  187. Not bought papers today Rico no pics no write ups not interested….!

  188. i haven’t even put Sky sports on today, just couldn’t ….

  189. evening guys
    how we all feeling?? :(

  190. Ditto, i’ve come here to get my AFC fix, the media can go and F off.

  191. Hi JJ, you did a few miles yesterday mate, respect.

  192. Just unfortunately had to listen to talksport….Adrian Durham’s got a punchable voice, if there’s such a thing!!

  193. Durham is an utter prick Lee who most def needs a clump…!

  194. hi kev..we do these things for the team sometimes..like birmingham players play injured for their team..i wish id of been playing yesterday instead of a few of those lads
    yeah it cost a few quid too..the journey home was a lonely one..

  195. Yes mate, i did read your musings on your way home. Didn’t have anything to say, so just had a read. How we suffer for our passion…

  196. i dont think i could say it was irony..but i can see a similarity in the fact it was brum who derailed us in 08 when they broke dudus ankle and got a draw and gallas had a sit down..
    we went to pieces
    its 11..we were flying and brum are once again the team to do us..

  197. Lee, i only listen to TalkShite when i’m in London working, but they’re a bunch of tossers

  198. WATH – totally understand, sadly i have had to read in order to try find something to write about tomorrow ;)

  199. To be fair JJ, we should have been down to 10 men and a goal down after 5 mins, then Fahey hit the inside of the post, so if we can’t take advantage of luck like that, then, will we ever win something again? Yes, has to be the answer, but when?

  200. i wish the orient replay were now, not 49 hours away. the players are not the only one who need to get over this – i do, too…

  201. Lee, there is definately such a thing, Rooney is another one!

  202. Looking forward to seeing Aaron vs Orient, really hope he plays as we all need a lift. I’m certainly not going to the game to watch Denilson!

  203. That was what A.D was talking about…how there was a “witch-hunt” against shrek and the elbow was not even a bookable offence!!!

  204. kev, i thought i heard aaron is cup-tied for the orient replay – supposedly he played for cardiff in this same round. i cannot remember where i heard it – nor confirm its accuracy – but i am pretty sure i did hear it.

  205. Kev not allowed to use the “D” word on here….lol

  206. Lee, haha,
    Oliver, oh no! Sod it!

  207. hey rico
    kev i said the same to a lad standing next to me..
    after we got away with that i said we didnt deserve to win..we got all the luck we needed and we still couldnt do it..

  208. On second thought’s Oliver, i’m sure Cardiff wanted to play him but AFC refused permission, can’t swear to it, maybe someone else knows?

  209. oliver – i have emailed you, when you have a chance please could you take a peep? Thanks

  210. i think Rambo is available for wednesday…

  211. Defo JJ, at no time have i had a feeling that we were unlucky, it’s similar to how i felt after 1978 vs Ipswich. We didn’t really turn up…

  212. Aaron can def play v Orient, Wenger said last week he is back adn can play v Orient.

  213. rambo cant play in the cup game
    hes not cuptied but theres a law that states if a player isnt named in the squad for the game he cant appear in the replay
    he was at cardiff so he wasnt named..
    he cant play the replay but he’ll be elligable for the next round

  214. rico, i cannot do anything with it here at work, but if it is ok with you, i should like to work with it a bit at home tonight…

  215. hey wath..

    kev we always seem to lose finals to absolute shambles of defending and gk

  216. JJ how were the fans where u were, it was crap where I was, surrounded by numpties all of whom had been shipped in from the morgue I reckon….! Our support was pretty crap as well, wasnt just on the pitch we were poor…!

  217. no probs oliver, thanks…

  218. thanks jj…i was pretty sure that i heard he could not play weds – i was just incorrect on the context. i don’t know if he will be able to start, but it would be nice if he makes his first arsenal appearance in almost a year, at home versus the mackems this weekend.

  219. If thats right what JJ says thats just something else thats given me the right hump….. No Aaron on wednesday is a right bitch…! Fcuk….!

  220. Oliver i hope your right about Rambo+Sunderland. He’ll probably be on the bench, imagine the roar when he comes on?

  221. Gazidis “winning trophies is not our end objective”
    Has anybody seen this from his interview ???? What complete and utter bollox, is this what our club has come too…? I am gonna find the interview because if this fella has said that then they are taking all of us for complete mugs…!

  222. the support was shit wath..
    must have been near me. :)
    i left early..im not ashamed to admit it either, but i dont take losing too easy and i wasnt watching us get losers medals..that and i didnt want to be leaving the ground at the same time as the brum fans..i needed to be by myself..lets put it that way..

  223. Nevermind WATH, think how exciting it’ll be to see Diaby+Denilson labour against Orient {that’s labor Oliver lol}.

  224. yeah wath
    afc released it too early ..i think they jumped the gun.. there was a report the next day in an article and it linked the law..cant find it now but everyone was talking about it a few days after..
    we’ll have to see i suppose afc.com havent corrected it so its still up in the air..

  225. that is a discrace WATH, no wonder wenger doesn’t bother to spend money….

  226. JJ i’ve never stayed behind to see the opposition get the cup, so i’ve left Wembley/Cardiff early far far too many times.

  227. Our support was full of day trippers JJ how the fuck half of em got tkts I’ll never know, no passion no nothing just sit there gormlessly…! If your not gonna go to a cup final and sing your heart out and show passion for your team then don’t go simple as that plenty proper fans wanted tkts….! Another negative from yesterday.

  228. wath
    if gazidis has said that then hes a fucking plum..
    if footballs not about winning then why do we keep scores, tables, and hand out trophies at the end of it all..
    i can understand if we were a team like merthr tidfyll or peckham wonderers but when your arsenal its all about trophys..it always has been..
    weve got one of the best historys of cup wins and if our legacy is now about not maintaining that history then they can all get fucked..

  229. WATH, wait until you go to your next FA cup final, there’s even more part-time fans at one of those. I’m a season ticket holder, but if we got there i know i’d not stand a chance of a ticket.

  230. I was off for abit but am back.WATH AA himself said he plays 2nd striker in 4-4-2 and wide left of a 4-3-3.he has been awful for Russia as a 2nd striker ever since they switched to a 4-4-2.he has been accused for only playing well for us in Russia despite playing as 2nd striker and wide left for us.at the Euros when he was brilliant he also played wide left but had a free role to roam just like he does with us.the 4-3-3 isn’t the problem.

  231. Not gonna comment til I find and read/listen to the interview….! Cup finals are full of jcl’s tourists and coorporates its a joke real fans dont get a look in.

  232. yeah wath it was full of joshuas and jemimas..its the way weve gone im afriad..the passion for the club has been ripped out..
    speaking of negatives- hows rvp’s knee..??
    anyone know?

  233. jj, he was on here earlier ;)joshua or was it jacob….

  234. kev..
    if i can get a ticket anyone can..
    unfortunately alot of ‘us’ there yesterday were ‘anyone’ :(

  235. Don’t the rules say that if a player is ineligible for the 1st game he isn’t eligible for the replay.i remember when we had FA cup replay against cardiff when AA couldn’t play because he didn’t participate in the first game.

  236. thats it ktr..

  237. Hi jj.just hope we hold on to 2nd.

  238. lol rico i just scrolled up and found it
    nope..not him..it needed to be 2000 words long, full of wierd phrases you need a dictionary for

  239. Oh yeah ‘anyone’, he never misses a game, err sorry he never misses a Final.

  240. we”l hold onto second mate..
    but we shouldnt be just holding on to second we should be going for the cups..
    i want this team to come good so bad and i hope they use this to go gung ho in the rest and bring something home in may..
    if we win the PL or the CL this wont matter but something tells me we are up against it now..

  241. JJ at least your a proper fan, that’s why i hate the crowd at FA cup finals, full of one-game-a-season tossers that don’t even support one of the teams.

  242. JJ what do you think will happen now?

  243. to be honest kev i havent been to a game in over a year
    i dont go the the home games..but i used to go away all the time..especially when we came up here..
    the number of games has dwindled over the years..up until 09 i was going about 10 times a year but then my girl was born in 2010..fatherly duties take priority im afraid i cant afford to travel like i used to..that and im one of those dads who only sees his kids weekends..so it pretty much kills it..

  244. ktr
    it can go two ways..
    we can pull ourselves together and refuse to give up and go for it..none of that shit yesterday..if we get best barca that will be the catalyst..not winning that tin fucking cup..
    we can go into freefall and find ourselves out of three comps in the space of a week..
    i think we will get passed orient but if the mancs beat both chelsea and liverpool its over..
    the fa cup is all we’ll have left and weve got the mancs next so it depends which teams on the crest of a wave..
    its more a fingers crossed now than anything..
    we’ll no more after the barca game..
    its not over but it dont look good at the minute..
    weve been thru worse tho mate so lets not give up just yet..

  245. JJ, if you wasn’t a proper fan, you wouldn’t be on here and aclf all the time. Give it a few more years and you’ll be coming South again, this time with your daughter, telling her about the ‘old days’.

  246. what the fucking hells going on
    fuck me…
    fucking rooney got away with it???
    he got away with it??
    sorry for the language but fucking hell we no who the fa wants to win the league
    if thats anyone else thats a 4-6 game ban..

  247. I’m off for the day folks…

    hopefully tomorrow will be better and the chavs will smash the mancs…..

    Night all, be good….

  248. thats the idea kev…
    im gonna give it a time out and then in a few years il start taking her..

  249. see ya ricolicious..

  250. That’s what’s so difficult for Dad’s {& Mum’s} these days. My Dad introduced me to Arsenal via The Stiffs and i did likewise, Football Combination, Youth Cup etc. How do parents manage now? Going to Barnet can’t be the same! Not everyone can afford 1st team games, even through the Junior Gunners.

  251. JJ take your blinkers off fella Rooney can do what ever the fuck he wants and so can the mancs….!

  252. But WATH, Rooney’s a good honest proffessional. He’s not that kind of a player, blah blah blah

  253. Night Rico, not watchin that Gazidis thing in case it give me the hump, will watch it 2moro.

  254. i know wath but fuck me his elbow was so obvious..no one could have got outta that one..
    whats he gonna say..oops i slipped..
    if someone does that on the street and is on cctv its prison for a few nights
    the fa is a joke..a joke that aint even funny

  255. Night rico.JJ im dreading the worst to be honest.i also don’t think rvp is badly injured as by now reports of surgery would have started to leak if he was that bad.my heart says that we may go to the camp nou and get something.my head is telling me no chance!…if we can KO barca it would be a catalyst for our season.

  256. Goodhonest ENGLISH pro AKev….. don’t forget the English bit it makes him a bit of a rough diamond rogue kinda fella but he wouldn’t do anything on purpose…! Tossers the lot of em..!

  257. also
    if rooney gets a red card, that game dont finish 4-0..
    manu have to play with 10 men for 80 mins
    its a fix all day long..
    feel sorry for wigan that loss put them in relegation trouble when really if the refs and fa grew some fucking balls they would have had a chance in that game..

  258. JJ I wasn’t even surprised.if cesc had done that the media would’ve eaten him up alive.

  259. That’s it, a good pro, just like Shawcross, Taylor and Barton. Let’s all kick those fancy dan foreigners!

  260. keep the faith ktr..
    after newcastle we thought it was over and wolves did fa utd and we beat barca
    if chelsea and pool do the biz and we beat sunderland and somehow get passed barca its back on big time..
    this result means nothing really, not at the moment anyway..like i said we’ll know more next tues night..

  261. yeah those sweet, soft centred, super talented, technical boys dont mean to do such things..
    shame on the other players for playacting..

  262. Listening to Henry talk you realise he is a real gunner.he is a class act.

  263. Yeah, that Eduardo, what a softie!

  264. Amazing how the media are so quiet about it, its fuckin pathetic….!

  265. KT, is he still training at London Colney?

  266. Off topic:Serie A has really declined.all 3 Italian sides:Milan,Inter and Roma lost at home in the CL.thinking there was a time when italian sides never lost at home.

  267. No allezkev.he left us on Jan 19th.

  268. Any news on Van the Man? No news usually is good news! Fingers crossed.

  269. I was also very impressed with subotic and Hummels at the weekend in Dortmund’s victory over Bayern.no wonder Dortmund have only conceded 14 goals in the league so far.

  270. AKev, bet RVP is out for weeks just watch…!

  271. i stopped watching seria A years ago..id rather watch the championship than watch that shite..

    yeah that eduardo was a right panzy..it was a fair tackle he just got his leg and his ankle and his shin and his foot in the way..

    that silly bloke yesterday shouldnt have put his head upto rooneys elbow..what was he thinking doing that..just a coming together, nothing more..

  272. Nothing on Arse.com, only the Gazides interview WATH.

  273. allez i think if he was badly injured the news would’ve already leaked by now.i think Aw was just being cautious with him as we have 3 more competitions to fight for.he thought bendtner/chamakh could finish them off but it backfired.

  274. i watched that game ktr dortmund looked good..
    yeah subotic looks the real deal and that hummels is a player aint he..

    the media dont wanna piss fergie off wath..or he’ll ban them all..they dont want that now do they
    abit like the refs..if they dont do as they told he’ll ban all them as well..

  275. Part of what TH14 has said

    “Unfortunately we know I had to leave the club, for reasons I have explained many times, but although I left Arsenal you never really leave Arsenal.

    “Whenever I go back I feel like I have gone home, it’s a big family and I became a fan of the club.

    “I knew what it was like to beat Manchester United, I knew what it meant to the fans when we were playing against Tottenham, I knew all that, you don’t get that from one or two years, you need to live and breathe Arsenal to understand that.”

    He needs to explain the last bit to a few of them there now cos they fail to grasp that bit…!

  276. Subotic, i’ve this guys name mentioned lots of times,is he any good KT? Hummels? What position?

  277. wath..
    what did gazidis say??

    and as for henry…you remember a post match interview with henry and romford pele when they won a game and henry said his goal was lucky cos it came off the beans on toast?? ;)

    i read an article the other day where ray was explaining it and he was henrys roommate and he was teaching him ryhming slang and when they did the interview ray reminded him and henry used it lol

    the guy loved us..we need more of him..not just his skill but his attitude towards the club, the history, the fans, everything..

  278. WATH, TH14 played with the likes of Keown, Dixon, Winterburn, Parlour and Adams. He learned from the experts. Who teaches them today?

  279. Both are monster CBs allez.Hummels is German and Subotic is Serbian.they are very good.

  280. put it this way kev
    if we had subotic we wouldnt have had to worry about zilic..
    subotics just as big.. and hes fast and strong in the tackle..

  281. I want lehmann to be part of the coaching staff to instill those values.

  282. we needed more local lads yesterday
    its ok having the skill but in the games like that the players need to know what it means as well..
    we lacked desire
    brum beat us with heart..
    heart goes a long way…

  283. Thanks KT/JJ. Therefore they’ll both cost more than £5million, thus we can forget about Arse signing them.
    Oh Stoke are winning 1-0, thought you’d all like to know!!!

  284. Hummels was very impressive.he is an excellent man marker and was like a shadow on Mario Gomez.he only allowed Gomez who has been very prolific 24 touches.

  285. velas not playing thats why..
    woys stupid..
    they need goals so they leave a goalscorer on the bench

  286. JJ, hopefully we’ll get a few more Brits into the team/squad next season. The Kids give me a tonic when i’m feeling P’d off, like today.

  287. JJ thats why i hope landsbury makes it.the passion he showed after scoring at the spuds is what we need in the team.

  288. JJ, Vela was a mug not going to Bolton, dodgy agent methinks

  289. hummels reminds me of watching koz at his best this season..
    subotics the one who goes for everything and hummels is the one who tidys up and marks his man out of the game..

    koz and jd are just as good..they just werent good yesterday ;)
    the occasion??
    cos it aint the talent they are good cb’s

  290. KT, what kind of fee would be required to get either Subotic or Hummels?

  291. i think vela has blown his career with us
    something dodgy happened there and AW let him make his own mind up cos AW accepted coyles offer..vela fucked it
    worked out for coyle though..sturridge is a good lil player..

  292. You know, i make you right JJ, nobody questioned WS,JD or LK before the game. They just had a mare, it happens.

  293. I think i’ve sussed it.

    We all know in our hearts that another season of promise is over, we’re just waiting for Man U and Barca to dot the I’s and cross the T’s.

    So – why don’t we loan out Wenger for the rest of the season ? I’m sure one of these crisis clubs like West Ham or Chelsea would snap him up. As a replacement we could bring in someone like Steve Bould who could teach the team some good habits and perhaps deflate a few egos.

  294. lansbury, JET, frimpong will come thru
    along with rambo jack gibbs and theo we’ll have a fair few next year
    built in passion..
    just need the chance to learn with the likes of rvp and cesc to develop the skills
    and after all the games denilson and diaby have had id be fucked off if they dont get it..

  295. JJ, JD and Kos are good technically and decent in europe, Kos still struggles against lumps in the prem league, thats games where we need another quality centre back who is also a lump but can read the game and is hard as nails…!

    The Gazidis interview is supposed to contain him saying that trophies are not our number one aim… not listening to it until 2moro as I will be so angry if he has indeed said that, if he aint then fine but if he has its a fuckin disgrace…!

  296. I hope Lansbury, Frimpong, Gibbs, JET, Bartley maybe get the opportunities Denilson has had. We may have some decent players on our hands, if so.

  297. jd and koz are class
    we know they are weve watched them all season
    ches has got what it takes too..they just fucked up yesterday..
    they young enough to learn from it..
    it was a bad day at the office yesterday..
    ive seen seaman get beat from half way line in finals it didnt make him a bad gk
    i dont think ive ever seen adams or bouldie make those cockups though ;)

  298. WATH, i think he said ‘they were the clubs no.1 aim’.

  299. lmao steve… :lol:

    JD’s been dealing with the big lumps all season..just not yesterday

    but yeah id take subotic to add to the depth of the back line..

  300. That’s right JJ, Adams would never have sliced the ball into his own net at OT, no way!

  301. bartley
    forgot him

  302. thats the one kev :)

    i was talking about that with my mate last night and he remembered that too but i couldnt remember the game

  303. were we went wrong yesterday was midfield in the main
    yes the back line crippled under the pressure but the midfield lacked everything
    jack was the only one who drove..song looks knackered and kept giving the ball away and rosicky times coming to an end im sorry to say..
    we didnt create any real clear cut chances really and we got out battled in the middle

  304. There’s a good item on YoungGuns. JJ you might find it interesting.

  305. vela supersub
    shut up jonjon ;)

  306. JJ, why wasn’t Diaby not on the bench?

  307. That Vela, always rated him….lol

  308. dunno kev
    maybe he isnt fit yet
    but my choice would have been either to play diaby with song and push jack up or play nasri with jack and song and play nikki wide..
    rosckiy was a bad call by AW….i was shocked..i think AW sees tomas going in summer and it was a sentimental pick..rosickys gone in summer and after all he went thru AW was sending him out on a high..
    bad move..hes not half the player he was..

  309. JJ, my mate is Brentford yes I do have non Arsenal friends just not very many ;-) He said everytime Xhez made any kind of mistake the best thing about him was it didnt seem to affect him he seemed to grow and learn from it which was good, so soon enough we will see about that as well, for me he needs to play Wednesday for sure to get rid of any gremlins or thoughts…!

  310. Got to say that Rosicky was my pick, but i got that wrong. He’s under contract till the summer of 2012, so will Wenger retain him or try to sell him???

  311. Wath ;)
    it dont suprise me with ches though..hes got that aura…hes a confident lad..if that happens to almunia or fab they go into freefall for a season or two so lets see how zcxczcxcxzcxzcney handles it.

    kev i dunno when his contracts up but if we are going to bring all those young guns through then someones gotta make way..
    i think tomas will be sold if hes not released..
    profits and all that ;)

  312. and you know summat
    yeah id field a strong team v orient..blow them to bits and get the momentum back quick
    smash sunderland and then go to barca on a high
    ive heard the valdes, pique, puyol AND xavi are all out so without their back line and their playmaker that makes em there for the taking..even if they have messi, no xavi means their midfield dont tick..if we get take control their forwards wont see the ball.. ;)

  313. I’m off fella’s, chat 2moro……. take it easy..!

  314. I think Wenger will rotate JJ, night WATH

  315. night wath
    yeah wenger will rotate defo..
    but id keep ches in

  316. Yeah, i’d go with that, but again, i suspect we’ll see Almunia in goal. In fact, with a couple of exceptions we’ll probably see close to the team we saw in the first game.

  317. Actually, who will play up front? If RVP is injured then does AW risk Bendtner and/or Chamackh? Maybe Freeman will get a game….

  318. whoever plays..we need a good win
    yesterdays defeat means we have to wipe our minds and start again with a clean slate..
    pretty much start the season off again and theres no better start than a good 4-0 humping

  319. I’m bailing out now mate. See ya tomorrow.

  320. Yeah sack that French twat.. what has he ever done for this football club?! Honestly some people are retarded!! The above line was sarcasm by the way!!!

    This is a cup we’ve never taken seriously yet the man decided this season that we should.. not because he considered it our only/best chance of silverware but to hopefully use it to build the belief and winning mentality in the team!!!

    I was distraught after yesterdays defeat and refused to see or take any positive spin on it but after reflecting on it I seriously believe that the defeat will wake up the players and give them more hunger again cos they were beginning to get complacent and expected to just run rings round birmingham and have them roll over!!!

    So instead of crushing defeat let us call it a brilliant wake up call engineered to spur (hate to use that word) us on to bigger and more important trophies this season starting with the FA cup on wednesday!!!

    That’s what I feel I need to make me sleep at night right now anyway lol

    I just wrote that on another blog and I thought i’d share it with you guys in case anyone still needed blog counselling!!!

  321. Vela grabbed himself another goal last night to earn WBA a draw….

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