Lucky Arsenal Stumble Past Swansea And To The Top Of The League

Arsenal are second in the Premier League this morning after a 3-2 win over Swansea City, level on points with Manchester City who drew with Everton yesterday.

But the match at The Emirates was a strange one.

Arsenal played well at times and for portions of the game we looked in complete control – but at others we looked like we were going to buckle under the slightest pressure.

Arsenal were leading 2-0 thanks to a double from Theo Walcott.

Then Granit Xhaka’s bad afternoon started when he somehow “fell over” and let Swansea back into the game.

After that Arsenal looked edgy and at 2-1 we looked like conceding the equaliser. Mesut Özil scored an absolute cracker to restore our 2 goal lead and when you thought we might actually be on the way to 3 points Modou Barrow’s (who was hugely impressive all game) crossed to make the game 3-2 and give us a nervy second half.

Granit Xhaka, who committed a professional foul on Barrow as Swansea were about to break on us received a very harsh red card and I’d tend to agree with Arsene Wenger when he said it was a “very dark yellow” at the most.

That meant we played 20 minutes plus added time with 10 men and in that time Swansea had about 4 chances to steal an equaliser – although “steal” would be unfair as Swansea attacked with intent and looked dangerous every time they went forward.

In the end, it would have ended 3-3 or 5-2 as Theo Walcott hit the post and missed a sitter at the death, but the bottom line was we took home the 3 points and reached the summit of the Premier League after 8 games.

So what do you think? Were we lucky? Is winning games like this a sign of champions? Or are Arsenal riding their luck? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below!

Tottenham Completely Bottle It And Were Lucky Against Arsenal!

Before the game, it was billed as the biggest North London Derby and the pressure on Arsenal to get something from the game was massive. With two poor performances against Manchester United and Swansea City, Arsenal were struggling badly and an in-form Tottenham Hotspur, at White Hart Lane, was the last thing we needed. They did lose to West Ham midweek but prior to that had won 6 Premier League games on the bounce – they were certainly the in-form team going into this match.

But what happened was Tottenham completely bottled it. Playing at home in front of their own supporters, they had the perfect chance to put the final nail in Arsenal’s coffin. And to make matters worse for Arsenal, they gave them a huge helping hand.

Arsenal looked solid for the most part in the first half and took the lead after some excellent play from Danny Welbeck and Hector Bellerin. The Spaniard’s cross found Ramsey inside the box and his back-heel goal was exquisite. Arsenal went into half time 1-0 up and we looked more than comfortable.

But then Tottenham had a ridiculously huge amount of luck as everything went for them and the sequence of events gave the home team the perfect opportunity to not only beat Arsenal but to knock their fiercest rivals out of the title race.

But fortunately for us, Tottenham do what they always do which is lose their bottle when it matters.

Already on a yellow card, Francis Coquelin dived in on Harry Kane and received a second yellow for a late challenge. No arguments about the sending off but it meant we had it all to do with 35 minutes left of the game to play.

Tottenham obviously pushed for a goal and a very very fortunately bounce from a corner found Alderwhatever and he had a tap in from close range.

With Arsenal heads down Tottenham had a perfect chance to kill the game off and a curling effort from Harry Kane put the home side 2-1 up. After that, it was hard to see how Arsenal would get back into this game – 2-1 down against Tottenham away from home, and with only 10 men.

It would have taken a miracle to get anything from this game.

Fortunately, Tottenham do what they do best and bottled it. Alexis Sanchez snatched a hugely important goal on 76 minutes and we had a golden chance to win it when Aaron Ramsey found himself through on goal with seconds remaining. But it wasn’t to be and to get a draw from such a dire situation that we found ourselves in was a huge result for Arsenal.

The positives we can take from this performance and result mean we can definitely overcome Tottenham in the league and see how close we can get to Leicester.

Tottenham on the other hand will have a lot of regrets from the game, ruing a fantastic chance to cement their title credentials and gain vital ground in the title race.

Are You Done With Arsenal Yet? Alexis Sanchez Almost Is

On Monday I said that I was officially done with Arsenal. After 27 years of supporting the greatest team that ever existed (to me obviously) I’d just had enough.

The performance on Sunday against a ridiculously under-strength Manchester United side was a disgrace of epic proportions, as Arsenal out Arsenal themselves and put in a timid and pathetic performance when 3 points was the minimum requirement.

We hadn’t won at Old Trafford since 2006 when Adebayor was played in by Cesc Fabregas for a late winner, and since then we’ve been pathetic.

At the weekend we lost to a Manchester United side ravaged by injuries to big players and managed by Louis van Gaal, and in the last two seasons it wasn’t much better. Last season we drew 1-1 at Old Trafford when Theo Walcott’s shot-cum-cross was deflected in for the equaliser and the season before that we lost 1-0 to a Manchester United side managed by David Moyes.

Fast forward to last night, and what happened?

We lost AT HOME to Swansea City, who are in a relegation battle and had troubles of their own – with their own manager in hospital. However, they still managed to turn us over.

The performances have been awful of late (ever since 2016 started in all honestly) and there has been no fight, desire or hunger from the players – and that all comes from the manager Arsene Wenger. Have the players stopped listening to his pointless rhetoric? Because it seems as if the players have lost faith in the manager, the same man who has failed to lead Arsenal to the Premier League title in 12 seasons.

Alexis Sanchez has come out and said Arsenal lack the hunger to be champions, and would you disagree?

“Sometimes we lack the mentality that we are already winning 1-0 when we go out on to the pitch.

“We lack this hunger to believe that we can be champions.

“If we go out onto to the pitch with hunger to become champions, to win the Premier League or the Champions League we can achieve it.

“I remember a game against Manchester United last year. The lads looked hungry for silverware as we took to the pitch.

“We crushed them in the first 20 minutes and went 3-0 up. We were hungry and brimming with confidence that day.”

He said this before the Manchester United game and what happened? We lost both games without showing any fight.

Arsenal are full of problems at the moment – they have a stubborn manager who is tactically inept, our main striker is a player who would struggle to get into most mid-table sides, never mind a title-challenging team, we have too many players like Walcott, Ramsey and Oxlade-Chamberlain who are just not good enough and are average at best, we persist with players like Gabriel who are useless when we have players like Chambers who is chomping at the big and put in an excellent performance against Leicester the other day – the problems are plentiful yet no-one is addressing the problems.

Is it time for Arsene Wenger to leave? I’ve been a big fan of Arsene and always believed that he has been the best option available to Arsenal Football Club, but for the first time in 21 years, I think my faith has disappeared.

Yet another season where we finish 4th (and it might be worse than that if we can’t get our act together).

Goodbye, I Am Official Done With Arsenal!

What a shambles!

Yesterday morning I knew Arsenal wouldn’t win at Old Trafford. I was going to write an article basically saying that it was guaranteed that Arsenal would bottle it at Manchester United, it was so obvious!

That’s why I ended up working on my house in the morning, and then spent the afternoon / evening with the family. The Manchester United game was a foregone conclusion.

I am like most Arsenal fans, whenever they’re on TV then that’s it – it doesn’t matter what’s happening, I’m watching The Arsenal. And I usually get to around 4/5 games a season (not a huge amount I know, but having the time and money since I’ve had a baby son is difficult). But nowadays I find I’ve been watching them less and less.

It’s just the same old story year after year after year. The acceptance of mediocrity, and the 4th place finishes every single season! We’ve won a couple of FA Cups which is great, but we want more. Are we being unreasonable?

There are several guarantees you will get with Arsenal under Arsene Wenger:

  • We will lose to Chelsea (unless managed by someone as clueless as Wenger).
  • We will lose at Old Trafford.
  • We will finish 4th and celebrate it as if it’s a trophy.
  • We will reach the knockout stages of the Champions League, then progress no further.
  • We will have clear injury problems before January, but then not address them in the January transfer window.
  • We will flirt with the possibility of challenging for the Premier League, but ultimately tail off and be out of the race by February.
  • Then in the summer, we’ll be linked to 4,655,455 players but only bring in one or two – and the one or two aren’t actually in positions where we need strengthening.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

The match at Old Trafford was predictable as losing to Chelsea. We bottle it at Old Trafford and we get caught up in the atmosphere and disappear. It is an intimidating place to go and for the players from the Colney Creche they just get scared. This was a Manchester United ravaged by injuries and yet we got spanked by a young forward I’ve never even heard of. Arsenal always freeze at Old Trafford.

Arsenal has been my life for the best part of 27 years. Through all of the major events in my life, Arsenal has been there for me. The highs, the lows, the historic games – Arsenal was something always in my heart and I will never forget the amazing moments we’ve shared.

But now it’s time to say goodbye. Arsenal are just doing the exact same thing year after year and it’s just boring now. My life has moved on and no matter how hard I try Arsenal are just stuck in purgatory. Arsenal don’t actually do anything except make money and finish 4th. And I’m sorry but that doesn’t excite me. The acceptance from Arsenal fans and the board to just live with this is heartbreaking and we’re in a vicious circle of mediocrity.

Some will call me a plastic supporter but I am anything but. I have no idea how much I’ve spent on Arsenal things – football shirts, mugs, scarves, memorabilia, I have the lot. I’ve got an signed FA Cup winning shirt from 2005, another from the 2014 FA Cup winning squad and other signed memorabilia from the likes of Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Michael Thomas, Paul Merson, Ian Wright and Marc Overmars. I’ve got every single DVD Arsenal have produced, and even some turf from the old Highbury Stadium.

Ever since I was first exposed to Arsenal, they have been my life.

And it is with a heavy heart that I am getting this divorce.

Arsenal Over And Out As They Hit The Self Destruct Button

Talk before the game was how many goals Barcelona were going to score – would it be 5, 6 or 7?

And while the scoreline was a little more respectable than that, the same scenario has resulted – Arsenal are out of the Champions League.

An in-form Arsenal would have given Barcelona more problems, and would have scored tonight. But as it was Arsenal had too many players off form, and hit the self destruct button in the process.

Olivier Giroud, Aaron Ramsey, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (and Theo Walcott when he came on) were awful and well below their usual standards. Petr Cech, the back five (with Coquelin) and Alexis Sanchez were excellent. Mesut Özil was on the periphery and struggled to make an impact.

But the bottom line is you can’t have 3/4 players under performing, especially against the World’s best team.

Ramsey missed a great chance from Welbeck’s headed knock down, Olivier Giroud’s hold up play and lay offs were very poor and Oxlade-Chamberlain defended well but was woeful in attack – missing a golden opportunity to open the scoring and making poor decisions in passing.

It was a fantastic effort on the whole but we had to carry too many players tonight. Our form has been poor domestically and it doesn’t seem to be improving.

The first Barcelona goal came on 71 minutes, when Arsenal had a 10 minute period of decent attacking play. Giroud had a header well saved and we were causing Barcelona problems. But like a deadly snake Barcelona caught us on the break, delivering that poisonous venom in the blink of an eye. A cross by Bellerin was headed out and Iniesta moved the ball forwards – Neymar was through, squared the ball to Messi and just like Messi can, he waited and waited before scoring from close range.

At 1-0 it wasn’t a total disaster, although it was an away goal for Barcelona which meant we’d have it all to do at the Camp Nou. But then a moment of utter madness killed off the game and the tie as a contest.

A Barcelona cross dropped to Per Mertesacker – who inexplicably tried to lay it off to Mathieu Flamini in the penalty area. As Flamini tried to clear the ball, Lionel Messi nicked the ball and ended up getting clattered. Giving away the penalty was Flamini’s first contribution after coming on for Coquelin and Messi coolly finished the penalty and ultimately, finished off Arsenal.

The contest is over and once again Arsenal are out of the Champions League at the first knockout stage. On the bright side however, maybe now Arsenal can concentrate their efforts on the Premier League and FA Cup?