Another Thriller?

What to expect tonight? Have we any idea? And therein lies the problem with our current team – inconsistency. No-one, and that includes Mr Wenger, knows whether we will enjoy a night of flowing football and a handsome win or another stumbling, incoherent performance.

Last time out at the Madejski we witnessed one of the most bizarre games in Arsenal’s history. Being thrashed by a very ordinary team in a horror first-half, Arsenal went  on to thrill their fans with late, late goals and loads of them. It was football, but not as we know it.

Do you think we will score 7 tonight? No, neither do I.

The damage done to the confidence of the team by the horror loss to Bradford will have one of two effects; either they will respond by digging in and grinding out a win or they will say, “b*ll*cks, we are better than this and we will show you all.” If it is the latter then the rest of the season could be exciting for us Gooners, however  ……

Reading go into the game rooted to the bottom of the table and on a run of 5 consecutive losses. We have won one of our last 6 (can’t believe I wrote that!)

A return for Theo is very welcome, he hurt Reading in the CC and I expect him to do so again. Giroud is also available and probably welcomed the rest. The remainder of the team is less clear but we can no longer point at injuries as the reason for our inconsistency.

The midfield selection must be a headache for AW; JW is back and starting to show his exceptional abilities yet it took the arrival of Rosicky to gee him up on Tues evening. What with AW’s penchant for Ramsey how will he set up the team? My guess is this:

100a

With Cazorla playing further forward as the support striker. This allows both Rosicky and Gibbs to exploit the left wings and hopefully provide some ammunition for Giroud.

Today’s English Explorer: Clement St. George Royd Littledale (1852-1931). With a name like that he was sure to be a top bloke (love the St. George). His area was Central Asia. A big game hunter, Littledale  collected for the Natural History museum and led expeditions all over USA, and later into the Caucusus and Russia. Always traveling with his wife Teresa, one expedition took them from East from Russia and all the way to Peking. Another was a 1400 mile walk aimed at reaching the forbidden city of Lhasa in Tibet. They got to within 40 miles before being stopped. Teresa became ill and had to be carried 1200 miles back to India to recover. Now, I have tried carrying my wife upstairs and struggled – imagine carrying her 1200 bloody miles!! Littledale was a great Englishman and worthy of further investigation.

images

The Peter Storey of Explorers

Will we win tonight? Your guess is as good as mine, but we certainly should beat the bottom team in the table if we have pretensions of a Top 4 finish

COYRRG

Written by Big Raddy

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245 Responses to Another Thriller?

  1. Big Raddy says:

    On a totally different subject. Next manager of AFC may well be Remi Garde should he continue to succeed at Lyon

  2. Rasp says:

    Thanks Raddy, I’m loving the ‘Explorer theme’ we’ve all been guilty of navel gazing since the Bradford game.

    I expect Reading to start in very lively fashion as they did last time. I hope we learned the lessons from that game and Jason Roberts doesn’t brush our defenders aside again.

    They will be giving their last drop tonight, if we match their effort we will win.

  3. mickydidit89 says:

    Raddy,
    As I read through the Explorer part (always where I start) I was thinking that no real explorer would take his missis. Then you reveal she got a headache and had to be carried 1200 bloomin miles.
    And St.George called himself a Big Game Hunter sort. Piffle.

  4. mickydidit89 says:

    Like the team selection. It says “we are not frightened, and we are coming for the win”.

  5. Rasp says:

    well that’s suc’cin’ct :P

  6. henrychan says:

    I love your team.. Big Raddy..
    Especially with the SWAT midfielders.. hehehe..
    (Santi Cozorla – Wilshere – Arteta – Thomas Rosicky)
    But I don’t think Wenger will change the 4-3-3 formation..
    If Rosicky can play as a LW.. then It will be okay.. hehehe..

  7. Manthan says:

    I think we should go for 4-3-3 with theo–OG–Rocksiky in front rockisy and whilsere had really combined well in bradford match.. Hope to see jenks today and give sagna little rest… We should win todays match otherwise we are in big trouble and i guess we will win it comfortably…

  8. Alan says:

    Was it you or your wife was struggling? Both scenarios pose different views of the situation.

  9. mickydidit89 says:

    Alan
    My money says Mrs Raddy was “struggling” for her freedom!
    It was a friday and while Raddy had taken of the Devils’ Liquor, I suspect Mrs R rightly feared for her safety.

  10. Morning all, thanks for the pre match Big Randy, I get the feeling todays explorer may well have been married to a Rosie type, from a certain DC song.

    As for the game, I supsect we will get a draw as the fixture has all the ingredients for a thoroughly unsatisfactory night for Arsenal.

    A home team desperate for revenge after losing a game they led 4 nil (and I’m dam sure they won’t play so open again and give us lots of space to play) and an opposition whose main attacking threat is all but out of the door.

    I’m not quite with “cin” when he say’s a 1 nil loss, I think 2-2.

  11. Rasp says:

    Its sad that Raddy has to carry his wife upstairs, there must have been a time when she’d have gone willingly :oops:

  12. mickydidit89 says:

    Right, off to kill time working. Big Fish to fry tonight.
    Cannot wait.
    Evonne,
    If you appear, please help us with where you found the bitscore info.
    Thank you.

  13. mickydidit89 says:

    Rasp
    ROLF

  14. evonne says:

    Micky – I have forwarded their email to Raddy, cannot find your address. Enjoy

  15. Nice bit of insight and not too far from what we were discussing in our preview. We just need the 3pts.

  16. Big Raddy says:

    Mrs Raddy is a Viking.

    If she had to carry BR upstairs it would be effortless.

  17. Red Arse says:

    Raddy, I do not know where you get your explorers from, and especially today’s.

    I have a pathological dislike of ‘Big Game Hunters’ who wielding their cannons from half a mile while surrounded by an army of beaters, kill animals just for the ‘fun’ of it.

    I suspect when you say his wife had to be carried 1200 miles back home, it was via the services of yet other animals – horses, oxen?

    What you can rely on was that he would not have sullied his hands with the task.

    With regard to your own situation, have you thought of surreptitiously placing boxes of chocolates at strategic points on the stairs, and then when Mrs Raddy reaches the top landing — your job is done!! :-)

  18. Red Arse says:

    As I have come late to the party, do I understand ‘Bitscores’ has been resurrected?

    They have not contacted me, and I am feeling left out — especially as I had paid them!! :-)

  19. Big Raddy says:

    RA. I share your dislike but it was different times and these chaps were heroes to the British public.

    As to Mrs Raddy and the perils of living with a Viking. On Saturday I went down with serious manflu and mid-afternoon took to me bed. At 7 p.m Mrs Raddy woke me up and told me it was my turn to cook.

    No sympathy, no tea in bed, no cold flannel across the forehead … I made a lemon risotto :-(

  20. Big Raddy says:

    Re: Bitscores. I had a season ticket and have not been contacted. Evonne forwarded their email to her but I followed the links and got nowhere.

    I suspect it was an automated message telling evonne her subscription had lapsed.

  21. JM says:

    My preferred line-up would be in 4-2-3-1:

    Szczesny

    Sagna, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Gibbs

    Arteta, Wilshere

    Cazorla, Rosicky, Podolski

    Giroud.

    Subs: Mannone, Jenkinson, Coquelin, AoC, Ramsey, Koscielny, (Walcott – recovering from injury)/Gervinho

  22. Rasp says:

    Hi JM, I always prefer your line ups to the ones we adopt for the games.

    Can you explain to us dunderheads whch formations AW has experimented with in prem games over say the last two years?

  23. evonne says:

    oh poo! Sorry Raddy, the new link worked in the morning, but it doesn’t now :(

  24. evonne says:

    Raddy – that was harsh of her, I feel for you…I had bad manflu all week, and 3 adults staying in my house did not even offer to walk my dogs, not once. Dying and with high temprature I had to go to the woods day and night, but at least I didn’t have to cook :)

  25. Red Arse says:

    Raddy,

    I once had a girlfriend who was perfect in every way, but she had a tough ‘no nonsense’ attitude to 19 stone weaklings, and Mrs Raddy seems to be very similar. :D

    That was some years ago. Nowadays, I am with a little angel who recognizes the severity of the male afflictions and, when appropriate, showers me with sympathy, soup and consideration.

    In exchange, I am expected to do all heavy manual work, like chauffeuring her about, making superb coffees, and wrestling with which recorded program to watch first! Oh the suffering I am subjected to!! :D

  26. Red Arse says:

    Evonne, females cannot get manflu!!

    It is an especially virulent, male specific affliction that only those possessing goolagongs can experience.

    Women cannot understand how much we suffer!! :lol:

  27. evonne says:

    Redders – of course I can get a manflu! If I apply myself I can be as pathetic as any man :)

  28. chas says:

    Cheers BR. Top quality.

    Didn’t Cin predict a 1 nil win to us as we are the away team?

  29. Gooner In Exile says:

    Afternoon all, spot on Raddy, tonight if we don’t see some character from our team then they (and we) are doomed (to not being in CL for a season).

  30. LB says:

    Oooh well spotted Chas

    I picked up the wrong end of the stick, glad I didn’t say anything.

    Thanks for the post BR

  31. chas says:

    I’d imagine you picked the right end of the stick. I just thought I’d sow a little doubt into chary’s mind. :)

  32. The word on Twatter is that Feo has agreed terms with the Chavs. Maybe Roman’s hoping he can set up some goals for Torres.

  33. Rasp says:

    Oh dear, well he played like he was gone already last time out :(

    I guess we’ll have to start thinking of an alternative name for him …. Th€o

  34. Rasp says:

    I’d certainly take a punt on Raheem Sterling if he’s unhappy at pool

  35. Rasp says:

    Mind you, why would the chavs want Theo, they’ve only just bought Victor Moses?

  36. Red Arse says:

    Spit it out, CharyB —- well what??

  37. Big Raddy says:

    He is obviously going somewhere but surely the Board will have learned from BSR and not sell him to one of our direct rivals.

    If he does go then perhaps there will be a swap deal for Sturridge or Hazard or the crazy MF with all the tattoos

  38. RockyLives says:

    Up to your usual fine standards BR. And another great explorer of whom I had never heard.

    I like the BR line-up too, but I fear we’ll go with the usual 4-3-3.

    Our record away to bottom three teams this season does not make pleasant reading, so I expect a tough game.

    Trouble is, as BR says, who knows what kind of performance we’ll get? If we play like we did against West Brom and the Totts we’ll be fine.

    Play like we did against Bradford and… well…

    Chary
    You’re assuming Cin meant a 0-1 loss to Arsenal. I read it was a 0-1 win to Arsenal… Perhaps Cin can elaborate…

    Alan :D

  39. Red Arse says:

    I think Theo will sign and stay!! Theo will be given the salary he is seeking.

    The wages of Cin.

  40. RockyLives says:

    Chas
    Just seen you got there first with Cin’s 0-1.

  41. GoonerB says:

    Sorry I haven’t been posting for a while chaps but I have been rather swamped this side of the festive period. Well done on the post today Raddy and also a congrats to JM for yesterdays which I have only just had the opportunity to look at.

    I must say I liked Redders suggestion on strategic chocolate placements to lure the other half upstairs. Very sophisticated! I think I will try this but once she reaches the top stair I will resort to Borat tactics (as he did with Pamela Anderson) and then spring out from behind a cupboard and catch her in a sack.

    Raddy, when you said Mrs Raddy was a Viking were you referring to her nationality or general demeanour.

  42. RockyLives says:

    Redders
    I admire your optimism. But I think Theo and AW will play a game of high stakes poker to decide whether Theo stays or goes.\\

    The Cincinatti Kid…

  43. Big Raddy says:

    GB. Mrs BR is both.

    RA. The wages of Cin :-)

  44. Big Raddy says:

    RL. Trouble is AW is bluffing and Theo is sitting with Aces on Kings.

  45. Rasp says:

    For a few more supporters the loss of Theo will be the final straw, we really do need that big signing to reassert our intent to challenge at the top

  46. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. If people stop supporting Arsenal because Theo leaves then they not only misunderstand the situation but they are not proper Gooners and can sod off back to the fetid, malodorous slime they have slithered from

    but agree with the Big Signing

  47. Ok, I’ll try again as WordPress seems to be vomiting on my eiderdown again.

    It may appear Feo is not really what the Chavs needed but ManUre got VanJudas when it seemed a more pressing need was some midfield creativity. My gut feeling is that the board won’t have learnt the lesson of BSR’s sale to Fergiescum and will hawk him around to the highest bidder either home or abroad and I have a horrible feeling there will be a BSR/Feo reunion at Old Toilet and Hill-Wood will be telling us all in a few months time he “was sold for footballing reasons” and that Zaha has huge potential.

    I’m not angry about this any more – it merely confirms what I have thought has been happening to us on an incremental, drip drip basis for a number of years – we are lowering in quality season on season.

    The time was we would be looking at a game against the bottom club as an opportunity to boost our goal difference.

    As it is we are *hoping* for a win.

  48. Rasp says:

    Hi Raddy, I think you misunderstand. I’m not saying they will adopt that position just because we sell Theo, but that it may be the final straw for some. I don’t know how many gooners you mix with in Denmark, but an increasing number of generally fair minded supporters I know are becoming pretty unhappy at the way the club is being run.

    The club needs to be sensitive to this and find a way of getting the supporters back on side – and that doesn’t mean coming out with more spin.

  49. Red Arse says:

    I have already expressed the view that Theo will stay, at least until the end of the season.

    I am however very sanguine about whether or not he departs, provided always that if he goes, we replace him with a shit hot winger.

    You will be bored by me repeating myself, but when I first saw Theo carving up the Arsenal youth team, before we bought him, and also playing some great stuff for Southampton seniors and the England U21s I thought he was amazing.

    However, ever since he had those shoulder operations he seemed to deteriorate physically and never developed as I (and most of the footballing world) had hoped. He has become a ‘blind alley runner’, and an artisan footballer striving to become a ‘special’ footballer.

    Yes, sanguine is a good way to describe my attitude as to whether we sell him or not — it’s not a biggy either way!

  50. Rasp says:

    Hi Redders, that’s exactly it. I agree he will probably leave in the summer, the main point is we need to replace him with someone better.

    I fully accept that we could not have improved on Cesc or BSR, but we could bring in a more effective wide player than Theo.

  51. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. I did understand you and maintain my opinion. Fans have a right to be unhappy but to stop supporting the club because one is frustrated with what is a short-term problem is foolishness, and it should be noted that he direction of the club has never been within the control of the fans

    You pick your team and it is a lifetime non-negotiable decision.

    I realise this is a bit prescriptive but it is one of the few areas where IMO there is no grey area. Arsenal is for Life

  52. Big Raddy says:

    Valencia? Or Pedro at Barca? Or di Maria at RM? Or Affelay at Schalke?

  53. 26may1989 says:

    The trouble is, one player choosing to leave leads to the next.

  54. Rasp says:

    I see Raddy, apologies, what I should have said was supporting the management, not the club.

  55. Rasp says:

    Actually I’ve read back and I didn’t say they would stop supporting the club, I said it would be the final straw – meaning in terms of their support for AW and the Board.

  56. Red Arse says:

    Therein lies the rub, BR. Who indeed to replace Theo?I would be happy with any of the aforementioned, whether they would want to join us, or be let go by their current clubs is a moot point.

    Not that I wish to interject in the discussion betwixt yourself and the Rasper, but you are right, for genuine fans, transitory ‘problems’ are just that and would never change their allegiance.

    I suspect tho’ what the Rasper was suggesting is that for many fans, rightly or wrongly, their patience with the club hierarchy is falling at an inverse rate to the growth of their irritation, and unless well handled, the Theo issue will only fan the flames of unrest.

  57. Rasp says:

    Yes RA, the management, meaning the owner, Board and management staff.

  58. Red Arse says:

    I understand that speculating about all footballing issues, especially about Arsenal, is grist to the mill of the blogging world, but is there anyone else becoming wearied about the endless comment/counter comment either supporting or renouncing the worth of our esteemed manager?

    In addition, the speculation regarding players leaving or hopefully joining the club always increases in intensity pre/during the transfer windows but it has now taken on a new dimension given our supposedly parlous position, 5 points behind 4th place with a game in hand. Tut, tut!

    I partake in the discussions myself, of course, and I am always ready to take up the cudgels in support of Arsene, whenever the need arises, but, in truth, I know full well that nothing I say will influence those with a sense of grievance, justified or not, and in turn no one will convince me against my better judgement to agree with them, either.

    Truly a conference of the wilfully deaf and just as pointless, so why do we have this vicarious ‘thrill’ in participation?

    Just because we are fans, do you think? :lol:

  59. Reddawn says:

    We are all in the guessing game. Will Theo stay or will he go? Will we play a 4,3,3 or maybe a 1,2,3,4. Who knows! What I would like to see tonight is not only a win, but one with real style. No doubt you all would too.

  60. Rasp says:

    Redders, much better to get it out of your system on t’internet than to shout bile and exude negativity from the stadium … something I and many others are getting really fed up with. Whatever my reservations about the direction of the club, I am all support at games and that includes the manager.

    Many regulars at the Emirates will tell you that they’re sick of hearing some idiot slagging off the players throughout the game, that’s why I think the club need to find a way of making the supporters believe the admirable words that IG came out with at the opening of the AGM……. “Our ambition is all about football – to compete at the very top of the game here and in Europe, to win trophies”

  61. Red Arse says:

    Rasp, totally share that view.

    I have not been able to go to a game at the Emirates for a long while now, but altho I am reasonably placid, I am often incensed by the ‘boo boys’ and their inane comments on the radio.

    Where is their loyalty? Do they understand the concept of loyalty?
    Are they as crushingly stupid as they sound?

    You have my sympathy. :-(

  62. Red Arse says:

    G78,

    When you say you have reblogged this on Arsenal BPL — what have you reblogged, and what is Arsenal BPL?

  63. Sheep Hagger says:

    Hi
    Theo can go if u want my option,he has not done lot to warrant another contract I would sell him in Jan or we will get nothing for him .
    We could reinvest in another winger/forward.
    That Zaha from palace he looks ok,young and quick .
    But the player I think would suit us is Rahim Sterling from the scoucers,but how much would he cost.
    On tonight game ill go for a 0-2 win for arsenal
    Much love
    Sheep !

  64. Adrian says:

    Decent team selection, but I swear if I see Ramsey starting on the wing again tonight..,.

  65. Adrian says:

    Raheem Sterling is NOT a decent replacement for Walcott, Walcott has improved over the years and is currently without a doubt a better player than Sterling. If we get Sterling there is a high chance that he will just be another youngster who has immense potential, and when he fulfils that potential most of us can already see what’s going to hapeen – some other big club will just come in for him/contract issues and the cycle repeats. No, with the current cash influx, if we sell a player we replace him with an equally experienced and good, if not better player. Or the cycle will just repeat itself again and again.

  66. Adrian says:

    And Crystal Palace have put too hefty a price tag on once again another youngster who has great potential, but not relatively experienced. No, I do not believe Zaha is anywhere near the 10M+ quoted by Crystal Palace nor do I believe he will be anywhere near Walcott’s standard for the next couple of years at least.

  67. LB says:

    That was funny Adrian

    Rasp has been talking about the final straw for some being Theo’s departure for others it is Ramsey on the wing tonight.

  68. Big Raddy says:

    Theo has one major plus and that is his attitude both on and off pitch. He is not a diver and seems a very level-headed chap in a mad world. Sterling on the other hand is heading for problems. Three children by 3 different mothers at the age of 17 !!

  69. LB says:

    I agree with that one Adrian, I would also be disappointed if we replaced Walcott with either Zaha or Sterling; we already have the Ox to bring through the ranks.

  70. LB says:

    No, 3 children by 3 different mothers at 17………Liverpool, what can you say.

  71. Sheep Hagger says:

    Rampant Raheem didn’t know that.
    Who do u think we could get in if theo left?.
    Fellow gunners

  72. Rasp says:

    I should point out that Theo’s departure is not the final straw for me. We need pace, tekkers and genuine width as well as someone who can chip in with goals, so I’d like a player who fits that bill. If the Ox is going to be given the wide right berth then great, we can spend even more money on a top striker :P

  73. Red Arse says:

    You old exaggerator, Raddy, the 20 year old Raheem has 2 children by two different mothers! Par for the course!

    But who is counting? :-)

  74. Adrian says:

    I do hope that a deal can be struck with Walcott though, yes he is frustrating at times but that is becoming the case less often. Anyone would be blind not to notice that he has improved quite a bit over the last 2 seasons. And I agree, he seems a decent bloke on and off the pitch with a decent attitude and I don’t ever recall him being embroiled in any controversies and he always speaks of the club with respect. Yes, I can see where Walcott is coming from, key players leaving year in year out, now that his contract is running out what’s stopping him from doing what other players are doing? As much as I hate saying it all he has to do is take a look at Man Utd and see how RVP is faring – genuinely competing in the league. But I do believe that if he somehow stays along with at least 2 top quality signings we can still challenge for titles, we have a very decent squad its just that for some reason it isn’t clicking atm.

  75. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. It is a waiting game because we have Gnabry coming through and he will be a star.

    IMO AW will play Ox out right whilst the German slowly gets accustomed to the PL

  76. Red Arse says:

    Raddy, you realize I exaggerated his age just to keep in with you!! :D

  77. Adrian says:

    Didn’t I recall sometime ago that Wenger/the ox saying that in the future he’ll most probably be converted to a midfielder? Or was it just a figment of my imagination?

  78. Big Raddy says:

    RA. He has 3 kids, though I did exaggerate the number of mothers which is 2 :-) (Google his name + kids)

  79. Rasp says:

    Sounds like Raheem enjoys sliding down the wings a bit too much :oops:

  80. Red Arse says:

    Raddy,

    I am happy to take your latest estimate. I do not have much faith in Google anyway!! :-)

  81. Red Arse says:

    Don’t we all, Rasper? :P

  82. Rasp says:

    I’ve just had it confirmed on twitter, he’s got 2 kids from 3 different mothers

  83. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. Check out a band called the Alabama Shakes – a track called Hold On is the stand out track of the album

  84. Red Arse says:

    Rasp,

    That does it for me. Sign him up immediately!! :P

  85. Big Raddy says:

    Nik B out for 3 months. He is to have surgery on an abductor injury

  86. Red Arse says:

    What is an adductor muscle? And what does it do?

    (No, Randy, I will not google it!) :lol:

  87. kelsey says:

    Evening all.

    5 days without Internet or land line, i hadn’t deserted you. Hoping for a result tonight.

  88. Red Arse says:

    Evening, Kelsey, :-)

    Typical, you arrive like Ali Baba just as I am off to get something to eat before the game.

    Adieu, mon ami!! :-)

  89. kelsey says:

    What’s all this about Bitscore . I thought it had packed up

    Enjoy your meal RA

  90. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ok, Theo.
    I spent most of my visits to The Ems last season chewing bits out of my lips in frustration at Theo, but now I am terrified of losing anyone who has ever found the back of the net.
    I suspect the club will change its “wage structure” but they may feel Theo is not the right person to begin that process with, for footballing reasons.
    Whatever individual fans’ thoughts on Theo the player, it will not look good losing him to Utd/Chelsea, so if that does happen, I would expect a fairly wallopping big transfer arrival in january for political reasons, quite apart from us needing goals.

  91. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hi Kelsey
    There were great tidings of joy this morning as Evonne thought the site was coming back to life. Alas, it looks not like the season to be merry. On that front at least.
    Winning tonight on the other hand, by at least sixteen goals, will be cause to hark about.

  92. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh I see. The pre-match nibbles!

  93. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just received this from my Father-in-Law (who some of you met at the Newcastle game last season)
    I spent a couple of hours defrosting the fridge last night. Or “foreplay” as she likes to call it.

  94. Sheep Hagger says:

    Hi
    Wat is bitscore I’m new to the Internut

  95. Sheep Hagger says:

    Ps
    Watching game on ss1 Gary Neville gets right on my tits he keeps harping on about The United Way
    Gary Neville V off

  96. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Reading: Federici, Cummings, Shorey, Gorkss, Mariappa, Leigertwood, Tabb, Kebe, McAnuff, Hunt, Pogrebnyak

    Arsenal: Szczesny, Sagna, Gibbs, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Arteta, Wilshere, Cazorla, Chamberlain, Podolski, Walcott

    COYG!!

  97. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Right, let’s close that gap.

  98. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    POLDI central?

    Theres more speed in this line up than a truck drivers veins.

    UTA

  99. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Thanks PPP
    Wow that is a great “along the floor” attacking set up.
    Hooray, Pod through the middle?
    And Theo. Does that kill the Chav story?

  100. Sheep Hagger says:

    Theo 6/1 to score first goal podoiski fav 5/1. .
    Carozala 8/1 brb put a fiver on him score first .
    Sheep

  101. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Is this the beginning of a new beginning, or something Churchillian :-)

  102. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    “Its a new dawn, its a new day, its a new life……
    and im FEEEELING GOOD.” M.Buble

  103. Big Raddy says:

    Strange. OG must be unhappy. Disappointed that TR doesn’t get a start.

  104. Rasp says:

    Pod in the middle hallelujah!! Nice attacking looking line up, we now need the defence to keep it tight and concentrate for 90 mins

  105. kelsey says:

    Apparently Messi has literally scored more goals in 2012 than liverpool football club otherwise known as No Hubcaps FC

  106. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Rasp, if Poldi has a blinder through the middle, my guess is that only Henry will be joining in Jan.

  107. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    SH…there was a pay per view website called liveonlinefooty.com that became bitscores.com. It was £6 for 60 days and was used by a few of us on here. It was top top quality…sorely missed now.

    I like Randy had paid the annual fee of £27. No loss really as they’ve given me fantastic value over the last couple of years

  108. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Nothing on wizipig
    Anyone help?

  109. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    “wiziwig.com” for anyone who needs a stream. (download sopcast) not bad quality.

  110. MickyDidIt89 says:

    No loss Sharkey?
    I’d pay double that this minute
    Heeeeeelp

  111. Sheep Hagger says:

    TA ghost that explains that one
    Got my fiver on santi at 8/1 .
    Off for a smoke wink wink catch u all half time
    Come on santi come on arsenal
    Much love
    Sheep xxxx

  112. MickyDidIt89 says:

    eh?
    better try again

  113. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    1200 miles Randy….quality.

    Rather you than me picking Arsenal line ups these days, Arsene seems to try absolutely every combo under the sun.

    I;m not convinced by tonights line up.

    How Podo gets another start after being so abysmal and apparently care free against Bradford, is part of the problem. Playing like you don’t give a flying one should not be rewarded with another start.

  114. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Really Micky?

    give me a minute, see if i can help

  115. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    Come on you Gunners…lets go and smash them !!!

  116. Sheep Hagger says:

    I’ve an I pad I watch it on Vettel if not on sky .
    I’ve a lap top as well but it’s as fast as razor ruddock over 100 meters .

  117. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Just double checked. Its streaming for sure..

    Ahh, your bad- its wiziwig not wiziPig :lol:

  118. Adrian says:

    Walcott playing down the middle.. Well he finally got his wish. Show them what you got theo.

  119. Sheep Hagger says:

    Br
    Tried that link on I pad it won’t work any 1I pad

  120. MickyDidIt89 says:

    My bad
    Didn’t know 8 KO
    Raddy
    You should be pleased to have Pod central. I am delighted as I think he’d given up stuck out left
    Come on you Gunnnnnners

  121. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Maybe we jumped the gun with poldi and Theo gets his wish to play central

    Sign da ting!!

  122. Big Raddy says:

    Interesting movement from Theo. All over the front line

  123. Big Raddy says:

    SH, None will work on an iPad because it won’t take Flash. You need to download Puffin from the App store

  124. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Theo playing with a certain swagger. A swagger of importance. Maybe he has signed da ting :-)

  125. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    PURRFECT BABY.

    just the tonic

  126. Adrian says:

    Neat little control and finish by Pod-pod-podolski!

  127. Big Raddy says:

    Beautiful finish from Pod.

    You watching Didit?

  128. Adrian says:

    C’mon Walcott, should’ve been 2-0

  129. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Vermaelen playing stoke football.

    Has he not noticed we have 3 midget strikers. Keep the ball on the ground oh captain, my captain

  130. Big Raddy says:

    We look shaky at the back.

    Come on boys, one more

  131. Adrian says:

    Well that’s rare. A header from Cazorla haha!

  132. Big Raddy says:

    Santi with his head!!!!

  133. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Purrfect. Nice cross, Santi gives good head

  134. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    :lol:

  135. Big Raddy says:

    And another……. I love Reading

  136. Adrian says:

    Oh how I miss this Arsenal.

  137. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Purrfect.

    Raddy did u say we wouldnt see seven goals?

  138. Adrian says:

    That’s going to hurt for Wilshere.. Right in the groin.

  139. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Jobi McMuffin should have got the marching orders for his follow through on lil Jacks gonads

  140. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    I was just thinking how Reading were leading 3-0 against us last time :roll:

    NO TONY, dont think like that!!

    Fat chance anyway

  141. Adrian says:

    I know this Reading side isn’t exactly world class but this is THE Arsenal that I remember. In total control of the game. I stand by my view that we’re most definitely not a side suited to chug the ball up hoping to win a header (ala Stoke). We should stick to our philipsophy of playing the ball more on the ground with quick passing. I’m afraid the problem now is Giroud(?), unfortunately the only way to get the best out of him is by chugging balls up in the air.

  142. Big Raddy says:

    BRFC were much better than Reading

  143. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Adrian, agree on all accounts although Giroo isnt completely that type of player you describe.

    @Sheep, unlucky bud. Poldi cost you a case of beer or did you have Santi score anytime?

  144. Big Raddy says:

    Reading’s keeper is playing well but they are very poor.

    Still unhappy aboutbthe left side of defence, Gibbs isn’t being covered when going forward – TV …. .??

    But going forward we look fantastic.

  145. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Please dont shoot me but is still feel that this team is flat footed and static at times. The movement off the ball could be better if i may be honest.

    Ps. Constructive criticism is usually better taken when your leading 3-0

  146. kelsey says:

    Generally very pleasing.Crucial tackle by Verm at 0-0 we look so much quicker than the last 2 months.Still not convinced about the defence as a unit.
    Would prefer to see Pod more central but signs are good and goal differece may make a difference at the end of the season.
    jack is really tough as old boots,keep it up lads

  147. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Raddy, most keepers save their best for us

  148. Rasp says:

    Ok so pod not on the middle but a goal and an assist and looking much more lively

  149. LB says:

    PPP

    I agree with you this team are capable of much more.

  150. Gooner In Exile says:

    That’s a good half of football. Adrian I don’t think Girouds only strength in the air, I think the side play the ball in the air because the big man is up there, it’s too easy, they need the discipline to continue to play on the ground.

  151. Adrian says:

    I’m not saying that Giroud is a bad player, it’s just the way he makes us play when he’s on the pitch. As with our footballing philosophy, we play much better IMO when we play with the ball on the ground more. And a forward trio which consists of the raw pace of Theo/The Ox is sure to strike fear into any teams defenders esp the fullbacks.

  152. LB says:

    Could you imagine how good we would be if we had someone of Cazorla’s control playing CF………awsome.

    Notice how few times Sagna has hoofed it in, why is that, could it be that we are being forced to play it on the floor?

  153. kelsey says:

    LB

    In a word YES

  154. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    By the way, Arsene has called Theos bluff. Theo said it wasnt about money, now hes got his central wish he will look like a melon if he stalls.

    By the way, his movement up front has opened space for our midfield. Not bad

  155. Gooner In Exile says:

    Martin Tyler “Theo seems an honourable man, and I understand his agents are decent types, I’m sure he isn’t holding Arsenal to ransom”

    Niall Quinn “if I know those kind of decent agents that’s exactly what they will be doing”

    Speaks the voice of someone who has been at the sharp end.

  156. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    hmmm, so true GiE

  157. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    GiE. In your view, being 3-0 up, at what stage do we sit back and protect this lead? And would it differ if it was a more competent opposition?

  158. Adrian says:

    Hat trick for Cazorla after some great play. On a side note, the Ox has been immense today.

  159. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    PurrFect. I love you Poldi, so unselfish and by far the best crosser in the team..

  160. Big Raddy says:

    What a performance from Cazorla. Just superb

  161. Adrian says:

    Wouldn’t mind if Wenger bring Rosicky on for Cazorla with 30 mins left right now, considering that he has gotten his hat trick and we’re in total control. We’ve got a busy Xmas period coming up and it’d be great to rest Cazorla right now.

  162. Adrian says:

    .. Poor from Gibbs.

  163. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    damn!

    Adrian, rotation would be wise.

  164. Sheep Hagger says:

    Sheep got the scorer wrong but he’s on a hatrick who cares its only a fiver.
    Don’t get 2 excited reading have never beaten us and they are bottom of the leauge .
    I back pod most games
    Happy SH

  165. Big Raddy says:

    FFS. Come on boys Concentrate

  166. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Poldi keeps em onside. thats just criminal

  167. Sheep Hagger says:

    Ramsey mark Robson kanu he knows his game they play togther for Wales

  168. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Thats the spirit Jack. No retreat , No surrender

  169. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    PurrFeCT!

    SIGN DA TING MA BOY

  170. Adrian says:

    Great goal by Theo, once again Cazorla had a great part to play in it. World class player indeed.

  171. Adrian says:

    Really loving Walcott’s runs.

  172. Sheep Hagger says:

    We only playing reading, they making us look like barca on Prozac

  173. evonne says:

    promised myself never to fall in love with another footballer, but I just cannot resist short Spaniards

  174. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    :lol: Evonne, i take it your through with that fugly bloke from Stoke?

  175. evonne says:

    yeees ppp, finished long time ago :)

  176. Adrian says:

    Podolski’s first full game for us.

  177. Sheep Hagger says:

    I went out with a Spanish bird in the 80s.
    Her name was one eater
    She only had one tooth

  178. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    We are far from our best, but tonight im happy with our 5 goals and the win. Still plenty of questions. But we are heading in the right direction.

    Onwards and upwards. :-)

  179. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Sheep, One tooth? Thats all you need to crack open your beers :lol:

  180. Sheep Hagger says:

    Ok we won Wigan next catch u all tomorrow
    The sheep got to sleep
    Much love
    And in welsh for u.
    nadolig llawen
    SH

  181. Big Raddy says:

    5th place.

    Terrific match with Reading at least trying to play some football but Santi and JW were just too good for them.

    Good to see the pace upfront with Ox and Theo.

    Still concerns at the back and Gibbs lack of concentration was awful.

  182. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    MotM is pretty straight forward?

    ……hes gonna find out if your naughty or nice…

  183. Big Raddy says:

    PPP. Typical Ozzy joke :-)

  184. MickyDidIt89 says:

    The best 90 mins in a long while. Fabulous to watch. On the ground, thrust, take-ons and some great movement.
    Great effort from everyone. Well done Arsene. Big big difference.

  185. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Raddy. Sshh, dont tell anyone

  186. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I noticed very big smiles between Arsene and Theo when he was sub’d. Here’s hoping on that one.

  187. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oi Raddy
    Just seen your post Pod goal comment.
    Can I assume that on the sportsmanship front you are…how can I put this….a gloater?

  188. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Early start for moi.
    A very happy goodnight from here.

  189. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Nite nite Micky.

    Theo still keeping his cards close to his chest in his post match interview along with Jack. IMO you cant judge Theo up front solely on 1 game, but he is miles better than Geronimo

  190. Big Raddy says:

    In the post I hoped for Santi to get further forward and tonight he did so because he knew that JW would find him.

    Looking forward to chas’s report.

    Bon Soir

  191. Big Raddy says:

    I think Geronimo just saw his starting slot disappear.

  192. Gooner In Exile says:

    I think it shows some of the dross we have been served up when everyone is happy with that second half performance.

    For me we did exactly what we shouldn’t do stopped working for each other started playing and leaving the back 4 with no options. We are still too easy to press as Reading showed second half through lack of workrate.

    Would we have win that game at home if we’d played like that? Lots of missed passes that would have been met with groans, I applaud Wenger in that he seemed to be able to make them try the difficult passes again tonight.

    Still lots to work on and room for improvement.

  193. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    Decent performance….with a return to the pace and power of old.

    Re Theo, sign him then sell him.

    He hasn’t impressed me tonight, he did Ok, and it was a decent finish, but I’d like to see how he fares in a home game where there’s less space.

  194. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    Very good point GiE

  195. Arsenalista says:

    Great performance.

    Theo through the middle is stretches the opposition and gave Poldi and Cazorla more space.

    Well done AW.

  196. Gooner in Exile says:

    I’m glad i’m not on my own Sharkey, agree on Theo too, but i didn’t like to be too dooming earlier :)

    I just think he ran in to more non threatening areas tonight, he will be fine if the opposition keep pushing up and he times his run in behind, but for me his only run when in between the sticks and we were in our intricate passing phase, is away from goal in to channels, which doesn’t really bring his finishing into the game. You can;t just make one run as a centre forward.

    Santi showed tonight how little pace is needed if you have good movement (and by good I mean effective movement into threatening space).

  197. Gooner In Exile says:

    Anyone know what was going on at the end between Sagna and refs/Reading players, seemed like TV5 was having to tell him to calm down.

  198. slime says:

    Going to watch the full game at 1am, but a good result. Sounds like a lot of goals came down our left hand side. Remember when Bale used to play LB but was getting injured all the time so he moved to LW? Gibbs anyone?

    Theo through the middle is an option depending on who we are playing. It’s time to get a squad capable of different ‘wrinkles’ (American!). Giroud against Stoke, Theo against Reading etc.

    2 points off 3rd. Big GD advantage. 3 winnable games coming up.

  199. RockyLives says:

    Best thing about tonight?

    For some substantial periods of the game we showed ourselves capable of attacking with real SPEED and WIDTH.

    We were even breaking from defence at speed with a couple of quick passes, spreading it wide and ending up in a threatening position within a few seconds.

    Dare I say, at times it recalled the old Arsenal of Wenger’s early years. We did not slow everything down by passing sideways through the middle.

    Very encouraging.

    And unlike some, I thought Theo did a really good job up front. His movement caused problems all game, he had some good moments where he received the ball with his back to goal and his finish was top drawer.

    Sadly I still think he’s leaving.

  200. JM says:

    @ Rasp says:
    December 17, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    Hi, I did not watch the game live (I am living in +8 or +9 GMT time zone, which means it is in the wee hours of the morning for the late evening game in London) and will catch the highlights later.

    A.W. experienced with the 4-3-3 when Fabregas became our fulcrum (in tandem with Barca’s rise), though in recent times (more often than not), he has switched back to the continental style of 4-2-3-1 (which he has originally started with our previous teams when he arrived at Arsenal. It was not 4-4-2 that was widely believed that our title winning years in 97/98, 01/02, 03/04; it was actually 4-2-3-1, in the guises of 4-4-1-1/4-5-1 defensive/midfield domination style, 4-2-4 counter-attack style and such. Bergkamp did mentioned that during his interview with Bob Wilson – from my previous video post on D.B.’s tribute, that he was playing as the centre attacking midfielder role in a 4-2-3-1 system. He did it better than most as it was his nature as a second striker and thus has the intelligence to alternate his game effectively during a match.

    In that sense, A.W. helped revolutionise the English game by bringing that 4-2-3-1 continental style/formation to the country, and subsequently other managers/teams followed it).

    I believe Arsenal FC, under A.W. shall benefit more if we stick to our fundamentals as being an attacking side based on quick transition and ball movement, and a root formation of 4-2-3-1 with variations in 4-4-1-1/4-5-1 to 4-2-4 does emphasise that.

    As to playing a 4-3-3, we could only do that with our core group of players (esp. young players promoted from our youth academy to the 1st team) are drilled/trained theoretically and practically in that system, along with a few exceptional and intelligent players being brought in from outside to maximise the 4-3-3 system’s potential to the fullest capacity (as similarly to Ajax and Barcelona).

  201. slime says:

    I could listen to Gary Neville talk about football all day long. That man talks sense.

  202. Adrian says:

    On the contrary I thougt theo’s runs were very good, it opened up space for the midfielders particularly Cazorla to push further forward. The reading defenders didn’t dare to let Theo out of their sight due to his space an he always pulled at least one defender with him whenever he made runs. Already loads better than Gervinho down the middle.

  203. Adrian says:

    His pace*

  204. Gooner In Exile says:

    The biggest difference for me last night attacking was the way we played and ran through the lines. Especially Cazorla, Podolski, Jack and Gibbs. Runs were well timed in support not bombing past and taking all options away.

    Cazorla made it look easy last night.

    However second half the shape seemed to revert to the problems of late where we had Arteta trying to show to receive the ball from BFG or TV5 and Gibbs and Sagna already way up the pitch. And the distance between Arteta, Jack and Cazorla was too far.

    Adrian my point is playing through the middle Theo will make more runs away from goal than at goal. And surely his reason for wanting to play centre forward is to score more goals.

  205. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    GiE, Does that really matter for us. Every time Theo ran away from goal he dragged at least 1 defender with him, and from there the gaps opened up for our midfielders. I know what your saying and i get your point about running in angles away from goal, but im prepared to give him time. He must be doing something right in training to finally get his chance.
    Also, in terms of positioning, i felt at times that TV5 and our BFG were too far apart and left gaps for the oppo to make their angled runs.

  206. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Manners!
    Good morning all :-)

  207. Gooner In Exile says:

    Morning PPP, it doesn’t matter when the opposition are poor like last night and track his run…more organised defences would pass him on and stick better with the midfield runs.

    He will have to do a lot more in those games to convince me that it’s his correct position.

    The fact remains he scores goals from wide, can he score more from his desired central position? I’m not sure.

  208. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Five goals makes me feel so much better about absolutely everything. I might even consider being less grumpy at work today :-)
    And…..morning all.

  209. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sharkey,
    I’ve just read your sign and sell comment re Theo.
    This is the same point I made a while ago. Let’s face it, the business side does matter, and therefore your point makes sense.
    I say, sign him, and see what happens between now the summer, as he has now scored 11 goals before we have reached the half way mark.

  210. chas says:
  211. chas says:

    Morning, All.
    Flying visit.
    I spent an uncomfortable period in the 2nd half worrying we were going to undo all of the good work of the first. The match report written straight after reflects this.

    How long today before someone says ……
    it’s just papering over the cracks…
    or
    let’s not get carried away, it was only Reading…
    or
    let’s not forget we couldn’t beat a team 3 divisions lower.

    Live for the moment and enjoy it while you can as far as I’m concerned.

  212. MickyDidIt89 says:

    “Live for the moment”
    Sound advice Chas.

  213. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Tottenham draw at home to Stoke
    Arsenal win at Wigan
    4th
    Very nice Christmas present for the righteous :-)

  214. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Lets not get carried away, we are still in a super super crisis and outside the top 4. Last night all we did was paper over the cracks :lol:

    Chas, Sheep already mentioned that it was only Reading last nighy.

    GiE, i get your point regarding more organised defences, but every oppo knows that even if Theo drifts wide from a central position he can still create as he did last last season. I believe thats what Wenger wants in our attack- a rattled wasps nest.

    It just seems that Theo looks boxed in when he starts wide right, like this he has the freedom to roam the whole front line which in turn pushes back the oppos defensive line. Shitty, Chelsea and Manure will never press high with Theo playing centrally. Which ive just realised would put us back to trying to beat the parked bus :-(

  215. Red Arse says:

    Morning Guys, :-)

    Remember;
    it’s just papering over the cracks…
    or
    let’s not get carried away, it was only Reading…
    or
    let’s not forget we couldn’t beat a team 3 divisions lower.

    Chas your words are so prescient!! :lol:

  216. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Anyway, it was 36deg today in Sydney (jealous?)and only now at 7pm has it started to cool down a tad..

    This gooner is off to the beach, most probably Bondi where all the british backpackers love to play.

    Maybe i can snag myself a gooner girl. :-D

    Have a good day all!!

  217. Red Arse says:

    Hi GIE,

    I was just going to observe that the game last night was perfect for us, in that it allowed our guys to remember how to play the slick, fast passing game with everyone moving to receive the ball.

    Then in the second half, (leaving aside Gibbs’s ridiculous loss of focus) we reverted to the stationary, slow, across the back passing which is bollix!

    Then I spotted your comment about Theo. I think he looked fit, and focussed, but whenever we had the ball he was inclined to shoot off at great pace — out to the wings.

    Not convinced — and I wonder if it is just Arsene capitulating in order to get him to re-sign? I think Theo will stay!

  218. Sheep Hagger says:

    Morning
    We played ok let’s go to Wigan and turn them over on sat its oh SS 12.45pm on sat.
    I’ve told Mrs Sheep the Xmas shopping will have to wait till after the Wigan game on Saturday.
    She asked me wats more important arsenal or Xmas I replied “Are u taking the piss,Arsenal love.
    If we lost last night I was going to make an appointment with my local CMHT this morning.
    Catch u all later
    Much love xx
    Sheep Hagger.

  219. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All

    No arguing that the first half was better than the second as Reading improved – how could they not – but let’s not take away from an enjoyable game.

    There remain problems but for now let us bask in the Wonder of Santi – he was fantastic last night.

  220. kelsey says:

    Morning all
    it was a great performance by Santi.Who else in the team could have scored his second.
    As stated last night as a team we were much quicker all round and Jack has a lot to do with that.

    I don’t take the view that Reading are bottom of the league as we have already become unstuck with so called lowly teams this season.
    AW learly stated that he gave Theo a chance to play centrally as he had impressed in training.That is fine provided the through ball to him is played on the ground so let’s see if AW adopts the same formation at Wigan.

    LB concerns me.Both Gibbs and Santos look highly vunerable in defence.
    Podolski has to play more centrally not on the flank and although Giroud only had a few minutes ,the jury is still out on him as far as I am concerned.he may turrn out to be a major asset or might fall by the wayside .
    Both goals we gave away were school boy defending but then again we could have had 8 goals ourselves.

    3 vital points so let’s see if the momentum can be maintained.

  221. Big Raddy says:

    Hi Kelsey

    I think the point has been made that Theo gives alternatives upfront with two different styles of CF. I would play Giroud at Wigan.

    Gibbs lack of concentration cost us one goal and almost two. During the game I was worried about our left-side defence. If Santi is playing further forward and Gibbs supporting Pod on the wing it requires a lot from Arteta and TV. As TV moves left we are exposed centrally – especially as Sagna almost always bombs forward to give a right side outlet. However, we want to be an attacking team and there will always be gaps.

    And can you remember a better performance from an Arsenal player in recent times than Santi last night?

  222. Sheep Hagger says:

    Just said on sky news Demba Baa fancies a move to us.
    Baa is he a sheep like me

  223. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Kelsey
    “LB concerns me”
    Look, he’s a Gunner, and once he’s had a drink, he’s a pussycat :-)

  224. MickyDidIt89 says:

    There is a consensus that we were better in the first half.
    Well, good news I say.
    My beefs this season have been:
    Slow out of the blocks allowing oppo’s to gain confidence
    Lack of motivation
    Lack of goals
    Arsenal of old demolished teams in the first twenty minutes and then went onto auto pilot.
    Last night I saw similarities.

  225. LB says:

    Puuuuuuuuuuur

  226. kelsey says:

    We need 2 more players to come in in January to be realistic third perhaps but fourth could be a fight between 3 or 4 teams. I dont’ think TH14 is the answer and even though the expectation in the CL this season is slim, I am concerned that in any two way leg we will always concede.

  227. kelsey says:

    Why Arshavin is frozen out is a mystery to me even if he is off in January and did we miss gervinho last night ?

  228. Funny how the commentators kept mentioning Reading being bottom. Did they say that when the mancs conceded 3 there?

  229. MickyDidIt89 says:

    LB
    There’s an expression in Devon where the natives don’t “stroke” cats, they “smoothe” them.
    Count yourself smoothed :-)
    Back to work.

  230. Rasp says:

    Morning all, fantastic first half performance. The sudden loss of shape, work rate, brains, ability that led to conceding 2 soft goals as they cut through us like a knife was worrying. If they’d have got a 3rd instead of us getting the 5th, it could have been a different story.

    One thing is for sure, the players proved that they are much much better than the performances of late and it is all down to formation and work rate.

    Here’s an idea, the team should have a ‘safe mode’ to revert to when the machine gets out of sync. The captain could give out a signal and we transform into a strong defensive formation until the rhythm begins to click again.

  231. Rasp says:

    Well that’s shut you all up :? There’s a new post coming shortly, just working on the pics ….. keep chatting :P

  232. Rasp says:

    OK all done, fantastic work by chas in his …….

    ….new post …

  233. GoonerB says:

    I like the idea of the safe mode Rasp. i think we just became complacent at 4-0 and the players probably felt, as we all did, that Reading would not have what it takes to come back from that. It is ok for fans to get into laid back mode but not a top professional outfit. We have surrendered good leads a few times before, so for me it shows more a psychological weakness within the players that has not been adequately addressed. I am a believer in breeding good habits regardless of whether the team is say Reading or Chelsea so that when you are in this situation it becomes second nature to finish the opposition off. That way it will not become an issue with a better side that at 4-2 could have exploited the sudden fear in our players more than Reading did.

  234. www.strongmarriagenow.com says:

    Piece of writing writing is also a fun, if you know after that you can write if not it is complex to write.

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