Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Arsenal-Sparta Prague Preview

Woohoo I have two hands again! I got my cast off yesterday and it feels quite weird being able to type with two hands. Today is the biggest match of the year so far. We have a two goal lead from the match two weeks ago in Prague and we have to hold on to it to make the Group Stages and all the money that comes with it.

Our injury list for the match is looking like this: Gallas is out till at least next month, Lehmann is out for another week or two, Sagna is out until the Portsmouth match Sunday, and Emmanuel Eboue will also be out with an ankle problem. It's not too many injuries and we should definitely have the quality to make sure we don't blow our two goal lead.

I think the lineup will look like this:

RvP-Da Silva

I think it'll be Eduardo over Ade simply because Adebayor didn't look up to it last match. He's been trying to overcome an injury and maybe he just needs more time so I wouldn't be surprised to see Da Silva or even Bendtner step in next to van Persie.

Hleb and Fabregas score the goals for us in the first leg of this tie. Hopefully Hleb can add another to his tally for the year as he works for his self imposed goal of ten this year.

Sparta Prague really shouldn't cause us too many problems. They are good for a Czech side but against Arsenal really shouldn't be any trouble at all. I'm looking for a great home performance out of the boys tonight.

I predicted the last score against Prague correctly, but this one will be tougher. I'm going to say the final score on the day will be 3-1 to Arsenal, which makes it 5-1 on aggregate.

Enjoy the match today,

ArseNole out.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Arsenal 1-0 Manchester City

Well it's three more points but it wasn't a great performance from Arsenal. Manchester City had won three in a row so it's good to get a win against them but I was really hoping for better play from the squad with Gilberto and Adebayor back in the squad.

We've looked scrappier this new season than we did last year. It seems that our defending has been much better, (our only 2 allowed were mistakes by Jens) and we seem to work very hard to open up the scoring. Last year we would allow the first goal about 75% of the time and even though it's early in the season, it looks like our mentality has changed. It's good to see a 1-0 victory where we weren't nearly at our best, yet still prevailed against a side in good form. It makes me feel optimistic about the year, and I think if we can keep up this determination we can go a long way. So on to the match report now...

The starting lineup looked like this:

Van Persie-Adebayor

And on the bench we had: Denilson, Song, Da Silva, Fabianski, Bendtner

Philippe Senderos was set to start the game but picked up an injury in warm-ups so Gilberto had to come in and play center back. It leaves us with a real problem in defense if he's out for any amount of time because we also have Gallas out. We really don't have any other center backs and this is why I didn't think we should send Djourou out on loan. Maybe Wenger looks to sign another in the next few days? We shall see...

So we started the match and it was pretty back and forth in the beginning with no real great chances for either team to score. Van Persie shot from about 25 yards out but sent it over the bar. Mpenza had a few chances for City but he was a bit shit the whole match really.

Richard Dunne and Micah Richards have been good so far this season and they really were looking impressive even against our high powered offense. Richards particularly looked very good and if we could get him at Arsenal I'd do it in a second. He's a strong player that we could use. Our defenders are fast but we don't have one that is just a monster like Richards.

In the 19th minute Sagna had to come off after running into Flamini, and Denilson came on for him, which shows our lack of depth. Flamini moved to right back and Denilson moved into the midfield.

Later in the first half it looked like City might get the first goal. Elano was playing well and they made a few chances with some surprisingly good attacks. Van Persie wasted another chance as well as Flamini and the tide shifted back to Arsenal.

The best attack of the first half was set up by Adebayor. He sent Fabregas through on the right channel and he sent a low cross to Van Persie at the far post but slid and missed. Van Persie had another chance from a cross from Rosicky but wasted the volley well wide. Adebayor missed a chance from a cross as well.

The first half ended a very entertaining one, but frustrating for an Arsenal fan because we had all those attacks and no goals, which seems to happen every game.

The second half started with a good shot from Adebayor which was tipped wide. City then had a great chance when Elano passed back to Petrov on the wing and he sent a shot across goal that went just wide. Almunia then saved well from Mpenza and City had a penalty claim denied.

Richards made a bad tackle on Hleb in the 65th minute and we were awarded a penalty. Van Persie stepped up to take it and I just had a bad feeling about it even before he took it. Is it just me or does Van Persie always take penalties to his right? Anyway, he stepped up and shot right but the keeper saved with his feet and it was another chance wasted.

Fabregas had a good hard shot from range shortly after but Schmeichel was on his game and tipped it over the bar.

In the 80th minute Fabregas got the ball and played a one-two with Hleb and sent a rocket into the top of the net from an angle. 1-0 to the Arsenal.

Eduardo had a chance but it was saved. The goal had really taken it out of City and the game was pretty much over. Three more points and City's first lost this season.

Man of the Match: Cesc Fabregas scored the only goal and it was a good one. I also thought Toure and Almunia played well.

Needs work: Our depth. Having two midfielders playing in defense is ridiculous. We need to bring Djourou back if we can or bring in someone.

Sparta Prague again on Wednesday. Cheers to the win.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Arsenal-Man City Preview

Well it feels like forever since we've had a game but tomorrow we're back to it at home to Manchester City. They've been playing quite well so far in their first three matches and are actually top of the table. I just don't think they have tje quality to stay near the top over the full season.

City will be missing striker Valeri Bojinov while Arsenal will be without Jens Lehmann, William Gallas, and Emmanuel Eboue. Jens I think does need to sit a few even if he wasn't injured because he's frankly been worse than the keeper on my 12 and under side.

So here's how I think the lineup will look:

Adebayor-Van Persie

Bench: Fabianski, Song, Walcott, Bendtner, Eduardo

It's a pretty strong lineup although I'd give a lot to have Gilberto in there for Flamini. I know he's a decent player but he never actually does anything to impress me, it' always just mediocrity from him.

Sven has his team playing quite well right now, and Micah Richards has been a beast in defense, so it'll be quite impressive to win the game, although I think we have the quality to beat them.

Anyways, I predict that we end City's 100% start to the season: 2-1 to the Arsenal

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

It's Been Awhile

Ok so I've had quite the prolonged absence but now I'm back in action and ready to go. I have been really busy with school and also I just started a new job plus I'm coaching my own team so I haven't had much free time. Anyway, enough excuses from me, and on to the Gunners.

Since we last talked Arsenal beat Sparta Prague 2-0 away (which I predicted, thank you), and drew with Blackburn 1-1 away.

I'd like to start by saying that Jens Lehmann has magically become bloody awful over the summer. He made a huge mistake against Fulham to gift them a goal before giving Blackburn an easy goal last Sunday. I think I myself could have honestly saved that shot. I don't know if he just doesn't have his head in it now or what, but really he's been a bit shit. Fabianski anyone?

Gael Clichy has been outstanding so far. His passing and crosses have improved loads since last season and he may be the best left back in the league already.

Captain William Gallas is going to be out maybe all the way until October. He got a groin injury against the Blackburn cunts and it's really not a good sign for him. He missed a lot of last season and now he's starting off injured two games into this one. Hopefully he'll be able to stay healthier after he gets over this injury.

Arsene Wenger says he is still looking to add to the squad with only a week left in the transfer window.

"I still feel I will do something if it comes up, but at the moment frankly, I am nowhere," the Arsenal boss told the club's official website.

"I have not found anybody. Either they do not exist, or if you go into the market and want to buy someone tomorrow it will be at a very high price."

So basically Wenger is saying he isn't going to buy anyone at all but he's pretending that he might. At least that's what I get from it, what do you think?

That's about all for the day. I'm busy again tomorrow but should be able to get a post up. Till next time.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Sparta Prague-Arsenal Preview

Champion's League Football is back again! Well, almost. We've got Sparta Prague in the 3rd round qualifiers in Prague tonight. It's the first of two legs and the away leg is always very important. An away goal is two times better than one at home, so we'll be looking to come out on top to take an advantage back to the Grove.

Injury Report: Eduardo Da Silva, Gilberto, Diaby, Adebayor, and Denilson will miss the match due to injury.

So if I had to guess I'd say our lineup will probably look like the one vs Fulham:

Van Persie

On the bench it'll probably be Walcott, Senderos, Almunia, Bendtner, Song, then maybe some of the young guys like Mark Randall for the other two, who knows.

Prague is a team we really should beat. Even with two of our top midfielders and two forwards out, I think we should have them well beaten. Arsenal has rolled through the qualifiers and group stages lately so I expect a win.

My score prediction: 0-2 to the Arsenal.

Tell me your prediction. Match report tonight or tomorrow. Cheers.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Arsenal 2-1 Fulham

Well three points to start the season is always nice. The way it happened though was not so nice. On with the match report.

Our lineup looked like this:

Van Persie

Eduardo was not even named on the bench, so he must really have been injured. The bench was Almunia, Song, Senderos, Walcott and Bendtner.

So the match got off to a rough start for the Gunners, with David Healy scoring a cunty goal in the first minute after Jens' clearance went right to him. 0-1 to Fulham.

Hleb had a good claim for a penalty on 10 minutes but Phil Dowd (cunt) said no. It really should have been a penalty though.

Arsenal seemed to pick it up after that, and it was one way traffic for the rest of the half. Eboue and Sagna were working well on the right as well as Clichy and Rosicky on the other side. It seemed like Rosicky was shooting every other minute but nothing was going in and in typical Arsenal fashion we were making an average keeper (Tony Warner) look legendary. He did have a good game though but we still had too may missed chances.

Half time came and the score was still 0-1, despite efforts from Hleb, Rosicky, RvP, and Cesc. Warner was keeping everything out and it was starting to be extremely frustrating as well as slightly embarrassing.

The same thing happened to start the second half, more chances created but no goals to show for it. Rosicky, Van Persie, and Kolo all went close but were thwarted by the defenders and Warner.

Walcott came on in the 62nd minute Eboue, because he's probably a bit more attack minded and you could tell Arsene was genuinely worried at this point. Walcott wasn't very effective in my opinion though.

In the 72nd minute Bendtner came on for his league debut for Rosicky. This gave us two strikers plus Walcott and we were giving a very attacking approach, yet it still didn't pay off for the next 12 minutes.

In the 83rd minute Kolo went on an immense run, getting past 3 defenders before being tripped up in the box and the penalty was given. Van Persie stepped up to take it and I honestly was worried sick about it but he smashed it home with Warner going the other way. 1-1 was the score.

The strangest thing happened after that, Warner wouldn't give the ball back to anyone to take to the center circle. He was literally surrounded by the entire Arsenal team trying to get the ball back. Finally Flamini got it away from him, and while the ref was carding Warner, Papa Bouba Diop stole the ball again, and he was carded as well as Flamini. Eventually we got the ball back to center and the game was on again.

Arsenal were pushing everyone forward and Fulham's time-wasting tactics were bloody embarrassing. i honestly thought someone would at least get a second yellow for it.

In the 88th minute Bendtner made a very strong header towards goal that was deflected and then cleared.

Then in the 90th minute, Hleb received a pass on the penalty spot and controlled it wonderfully before slotting it cleanly home. Arsenal 2-1 Fulham. The whistle was blown shortly after and we have our first three points of the season.

Man of the Match: Kolo Toure - Was as strong as ever in defense but more importantly realized that we needed an equalizer and stepped up his game to go for goal twice, once having a good shot just blocked and the other time giving us our penalty kick.

Needs Work: I have to give this to Jens just over Flamini. Fulham had very few chances to score and would have only even come close once if Jens' error would not have allowed them to score the first goal. Flamini is just not impressive. Maybe it's just me but I never see anything out of him that makes me think he's good enough to start for Arsenal.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Tottenham Are Shite, Fulham Preview

Well it appears Tottenham wasted all that money this summer as they lost 1-0 to Sunderland of all teams. It always makes my day better when Sp*rs lose. Let's hope it continues.

So on to the match preview:

Eduardo and Adebayor are both going to face fitness tests tomorrow before the match. Eduardo should play, but Ade probably not.

Gilberto is the only other injury.

If I had to guess then our lineup will look like this:


It's a pretty strong lineup that should be able to be Fulham at home 100 times out of 100. Whether we will or not is another story because we tend to play down a level against weaker teams.

My prediction for the match: 3-0 to the Arsenal. I'm picking a big win at home to start the season.

Fulham spent a lot this summer which is unusual for them but their new signings still don't give them the quality they need to compete at this level, and I think they'll go down this year.

Last year we started the season slowly, we have to make sure that doesn't happen this year if we expect to compete for the title. A big win would start us off quite nicely.

Match report tomorrow. Let's go Gunners!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Just Kidding, Gallas is Captain

Hello all, I now have cast on my hand because I broke my knuckle so i t makes it tough to write these but I'll try my best.

Yesterday it was reported that Gilberto would be named captain, but now that has changed. William Gallas is the newest Arsenal captain. This definitely came as a surprise to me as I felt sure Gil would get it but if it wasn't him I thought it would be Kolo.

Arsene Wenger told Arsenal TV online: "[The captain] will be William Gallas. There will also be two vice-captains, Kolo Toure and Gilberto.

"I feel centre-back is always the best position to lead on the pitch and it is Gallas who has more experience at the back. But Gilberto has always been a great captain and Kolo Toure has stature too.

"As well I made a decision that I want all those experienced players, along with Jens Lehmann, to be involved off the pitch."

We all know Gallas wanted the armband and now he has it. Hopefully he'll play the whole season and be happier this year than he was last.

Johan Djourou has been sent on loan to Birmingham. The move is only until January which means he will be back for when Kolo and Eboue go off to the ACN, but it is still surprising for me. We really only have three center backs then and if one gets hurt it could be a problem. We'll see how it all works out I guess.

Arsene Wenger spoke about how he expects Arsenal to challenge for the title now. Most Gooners I think think we have a shot but most of the press and other clubs think we don't have any chance. Wenger said this:

"We have a great inner strength. I have a strong feeling that we will do very well this season, much better than people think.

"We are aiming at Manchester United and Chelsea and I am not afraid of that."

That's about all I have today. Opener at home two days away. Finally.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Gilberto To Be Named Captain

Not much news again today folks, but I'll give it all to ya anyways.

Reports say that Gilberto Silva will be given the number 8 shirt now and that he will also be given then armband for the upcoming season. I think most people expected this but Gallas thought he might have a go at it.

St. Mirren are interested in signing young gunner Joe O'Cearuill. He's a young defender brought in in 2005 and he's only 20. He was out on loan at Brighton last year but it looks like this deal will happen. I just can't see him ever making it into the Arsenal first team because our defense honestly is just too crowded.

William Gallas continued his reign of happiness and joy, speaking again to the press saying that Arsenal will be a lot more direct this season without Thierry Henry. He seems to think it was all because of Henry that we passed the ball a lot, and had this to say:

"When he (Henry) was at Arsenal we maybe did three or four passes in front of the goal, but now we have changed our tactics completely," Gallas told Sky Sports News.

"Our football is different, but it will be good to watch."

I think we all have loved watching the beautiful football that Arsenal play but sometimes I really do wish that we would just bloody shoot the ball. Let's see if that happens this year.

Alexander Hleb says he is confident in the current squad as well, and it now seems every Gunner in the squad will come forward before the start of season to say how confident they are. He said he is impressed by the other club's big spending this summer but continues by saying that Arsenal will be able to compete. He really seems to worship Rafa Benitez though, saying this:

"I like Liverpool's transfer policy best of all," Hleb told The Mirror.

"Torres, Lukas Leiva, Babel, Voronin, Benayoun - buying them one after the other is impressive.

"We've only had a few acquisitions. But the squad is very good.

"At the moment I still don't know how we will live without (Thierry) Henry. He is a great player and a part of Arsenal.

That's about all I have today. I'll get time to do the season preview tomorrow or friday. Later

Monday, August 6, 2007

News? What news?

There is absolutely no news today. I mean none. Not one single article anywhere, so I'm gonna talk rubbish for a bit.

First off, I think I broke my hand. It's all swollen and I'm thinkin I should go see a doctor. Since I'm supposed to start coaching my footy team in 2 weeks it's kind of a problem.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say the score Sunday will be Arsenal 4-0 Fulham. It'd be nice to start the season with a big win. Scorers are RvP, Bendtner, RvP again, then Eduardo. This is all made up of course but remember there is NO news.

I got msn so if you wanna chat Arsenal or anything else message me at

That's about it. Hopefully we'll sign a world class winger tomorrow.

Here's a video of us beating Fulham last year.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Wenger In Contract Talks, Plus Another Trophy

Back Home. Finally. And what good news we have!

Arsene Wenger is in contract discussions with the Arsenal Board! This is great news because lots of people were worried that he wouldn't sign on again. It means Arsene has complete faith still in the young squad and it should also keep Cesc around for a while longer as well. I had always thought he would re-sign but there were doubts starting to creep into my mind. Here's hoping he signs the deal soon and sticks around for many years to come!

In the Amsterdam Tournament over the weekend Arsenal claimed another trophy, beating Ajax 1-0 from a RvP goal. And what a goal it was! Not because of Van Persie's finish though, but because of Gael Clichy's run! It was incredible. Clichy was up and down the left wing the whole match and he looks set to be outstanding this year. We've looked good in the preseason tournaments, hopefully that will carry over to the regular season.

William Gallas is back talking to the media again, talking again how he wants to be a leader for the club. He's apparently talked to Wenger about being captain and how he's ready to fill in for Thierry's leadership role.

"I know I am being called on to be one of the leaders of the team after the exit of Henry and I am prepared for that," he told the Sunday Mirror.

"I am one of the more experienced players in the squad and I am here to help the younger players in all aspects - and that is what I have told Arsene Wenger face-to-face.

He went on to talk positively about our chances for the season, which is a far cry from when he was complaining about the squad just a few months ago.

"I am not crazy when I say we can win something," he added. "We have to be optimistic and have the mentality of champions.

"I am a born winner and always ask a lot of myself. My only desire is to succeed and I want Arsenal to be fighting for titles."

Arsenal will face Sparta Prague in the Champion's League Qualifiers. We faced them last year in the group stages and we really shouldn't have trouble with them, but it'll be early in the season so hopefully we'll be prepared for the 2 legs.

Carlos Vela joined Osasuna on loan for the year, we're still being linked with Lassana Diarra, and Adebayor is probably out for the Fulham match in a week.

That's about it for the day, more quality Arsenal tomorrow, and if anyone can click on the link to my interview and vote for the site, we can win prizes. Sweet.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Eduardo Cleared To Play

Hello everyone, only 2 more days in Montana.

First off, Eduardo Da Silva has been granted his work permit to play for Arsenal this season! I was kind of holding my breath hoping that it would be given to him but now it has so he's all set for the start of the new season. Arsene Wenger had said that it would be a close call because he has not played in 75% of Croatia's matches in the past year. Hopefully now that he's been given the permit we'll get to see more of him in the preseason and maybe even in the opener vs Fulham.

Billy Gallas really wants the captain's armband for the new season. He says he is pleased to be named as one of the three who could be named captain and would not turn it down if he was offered the armband. He says now that he's 30 he's ready for more responsibility.

"I am 30 years old and I want to have more responsibilities both for my club and for the national team," he told L'Equipe.

"I am attracted to the idea of giving advice to the youngsters, to leading a group.

"If they chose me to become the captain, I would not say no.

"On the contrary, it would make me very proud to wear the captain's armband for Arsenal."

Gallas in my opinion should not be captain because he complains too much and talks badly about the team more than he speaks well of them. He made further news by saying that we need to stop playing "lovely football." Well Bill, you might not have noticed, but we've been playing like this for quite a while now. It's worked for us before and it isn't going to stop just because you want it to.

Robin Van Persie then countered what Gallas said by saying this:

"There are only a few teams in Europe that play the way that Arsenal play. I'll always go for a team where I would earn less money but who play fantastic football rather than to a team where you can earn lots of money, win every week 1-0 or 2-0, but who play defensively.

"I don't like to run after people all game long. I like it when they have to run after me. That is the way I see football and that is the way I want to play it."

That's about it for the day. Match against Lazio today, hopefully we'll do well.