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A few thoughts on the Manchester City 1-1 Arsenal league match

September 24, 2012

Hi Gooners.

Started a big football day like it should be, nice Sunday morning full English. Got the boys homework out-of-the-way so we could sit and watch the two big games live on Sky. The rain-swept down outside, but who cared, this was Arsenal’s first big test of the season.

First up was the Northern battle between Liverpool and Man Utd. I was not really bothered who won or lost. Just wanted a good game to get me in mood for the big one at 4pm.

The team and fans paid their respect to the 96 and the ground looked impressive with all the cards spelling out “Justice” Well observed.

Liverpool dominated the early exchanges at Anfield and could have grabbed a couple of goals in first half. On 38 mins Shelvey was deemed to have made a reckless challenge and maybe after a bit of chat in his ear Mr Halsey decided to send Shelvey off. Nothing for Evans who if anything was the player to go in two footed. That’s my opinion, others may see it differently.

Man Utd were not playing well at all. Then early in the second half a great cross from Paul Scholes found Stevie Me in the area and Stevie me, took it well on his chest, great body shape and hit a nice shot with his left past Lindegaard to make it 1-0. Within five mins though, United were level with a cracker form Rafael. Then on 81 mins the obligatory penalty was awarded to Man Utd to bag them the three points. Right after this in the same game, same ref, RVP makes a crazy tackle, but wearing the Red Devil on one’s chest gives you rights others players don’t possess and RVP only gets a yellow card that if what went before was consistent surely would have been Red. Would he have stayed on of he had a cannon on his shirt?

Anyway, like I said, was not bothered who won. Still I can laugh that Liverpool have not won any of their first five games for the first time in living memory. Funny how they don’t seem to be in the same sort of crisis Arsenal were in this time last season. Our fifth game was Blackburn away and we lost 3-4 and boy did Arsenal take some flack from the media.

Attention now turns to the big one… Tea and Biscuits, big match it has to be Bourbon Creams. Boot up Tweet Deck and turn on Sky HD1. The superb Gary Neville is flanked by Mr Ed and the slightly annoying Jamie Redknapp, oh dear!!!…

Arsenal team Mannone, Jenkinson, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Gibbs, Ramsey, Diaby, Arteta, Cazorla, Gervinho, Podolski. Subs: Martinez, Andre Santos, Giroud, Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Djourou, Coquelin.

No Oxo in the side, Ramsey in instead. The Verminator caught a virus (I understand Cyborg model’s T-800’s can pick these up easy while being plugged into the mains charging) so could not play, Bossielny in to take his place. No Szczesny again and the Mafia boss keeps his place.

Nice to see both sides wearing black armbands for the two policewoman who we killed by a piece of trash. Both sets of fans observing a minutes applause.

The ref blows for the start of the match and right from the off, Arsenal looked composed, passing the ball around yet it took all of eight minutes for the first effort on goal from Cazorla. Arsenal were just getting better and better the game wore on. The passing was slick, second to none with fast lovely triangles in tight spaces and then spreading the ball around to open play up.

Arteta floats the ball over to Gibbs who for some reason instead of bringing the ball down and shooting or even hitting it first time with outside of his left, just rolls it across the area, strange decision Gibbo.

Gervinho got to the by line but could not make his cross count, then Aguero cuts in on the left and fires one at goal and Mannone deals with it nicely. Dezeko loses the ball and when it gets to Ramsey he slides a perfect through ball to Gervinho who is in on goal, but and awful first touch see’s the ball run into the hands of Hart. Wasted opportunity and should have done better.

The fun side of football,  Cazorla brings down the giant Toure and both players see the funny of it.

Ball is now played wide to Jenkinson, Lescott has to be favourite, but no! Jenkinson steps in and takes ball off Lescott, runs into the area and lays it back nicely for Podolski, only to see the German fire was over the bar with his right foot.

Game is now becoming and end-to end affair and great to watch and Arsenal still playing some great stuff, but like Montpellier in the week, running out of ideas when reaching the 18 yard line.

Sinclair crosses and with no danger Gibbs heads the ball out for a corner, I thought he still had time to recover before the ball went out play, yet he stopped and just conceded the corner. Maybe he lacked the call from his defenders. One for Stevie B in training to correct.

Silva takes the corner and Lescott gets on the end of it to make it 1-0 to City. The usual analysis is now based on Arsenal conceding a goal from a set-piece, when last time I looked all teams do this. Yes maybe we could have defended better, but shit happens, that how goals are scored. This is followed by the commentators mentioning on and on that Arsenal have now conceded two goals now this season. Why is so much store put on Arsenal conceding?

Has this knocked Arsenal? City swarm forward again and the ball falls to Dzeko, who hits a cracker with his left peg and looks to be going in for 2-0 when Mannone gets a finger tip to it and sends it over for another corner. Need to regroup fast with half time approaching.

Arsenal see the game out to Half time 1-1. I consider Arsenal to be a bit unlucky to be 1-0 down. Still sitting watching the game relaxed, the boys were playing well and deserved to get something out of the game.

City brought on Rodwell into the midfield to close Arsenal down and from early play in the second half it looks to be working as City start to play their game and put Arsenal on the back foot.

It’s all a little bitty from Arsenal and they cannot get going, City looking the more likely.

Diaby and Podolski depart to be replaced by Theo and Giroud. Arsenal now start to come again, Gervinho is still being wasteful, but yet he is causing City problems and they need to keep and eye on him.

End to end stuff again now, Theo bursts forward for Arsenal but his cross goes out for a throw in. City’s turn now as Toure goes through the middle like the Hulk, lays the ball to Aguero, who is tackle and the ball runs out for a corner.

Gooooooooooooooal!!! At last. Superb shot by Cazorla is well saved by Hart and he puts the ball round the post for a corner. Cazorla takes the corner and when the ball reaches the area, Lescott is there to head the ball straight to Bosscielny, who controls with his left and fires the ball into the roof of the net with his right. Hart did not even see it, let alone move. 1-1.

Kos turns to celebrate his goal

The team congratulate with Kos.

Arsenal fans celebrate.

City almost straight away take the lead again. A superb overhead kick by Kompany is saved well by Mannone though the ball falls to Bosscielny who can only manage to kick it straight to Aguero who in turn  manages shoot across the goal and wide of the far post. Phew lucky!!!!

Ball is sent into the Arsenal area and right on the edge Bosscielny does tekkers and clears, what a bit of class form the lad.

Gervinho runs at the city defence and is fouled by Garcia. Then Gervinho collects the ball, turns, feints, makes room for himself and blasts the ball over from the edge of the area. That was a good chance and should have done better.

Garcia is booked, taking one for the team as Jenkinson outstrips him down the right and would have been away.

Ref blows whistle 1-1. Good result? Fair result?

I thoroughly enjoy that match. The first half was definitely Arsenal’s. The second half City were much more in the game and over run us to some extent though both sides went for each other. Arsenal were looking tired.  Thought City looked stronger though than Arsenal, until Theo and Giroud came on, when Arsenal found some life and came again. Giroud won everything that came his way. Arsenal were looking fresher all of a sudden and scored the equaliser. I was surprised to hear the commentators talking about City being tired from mid-week excursion with Madrid. Surely Arsenal played away in the Champions League the very same night.

Mannone? Was he to blame for goal? I suppose goalies will get blamed for most goals. Maybe zonal marking has it good and bad points. Jenkinson and Gibbs were really good. Both getting forward and yet taking their defensive duties right also. The BFG and Kos were well solid in face of one of the strongest attacks in the league.

Arteta was a shield in front of the back four, as well as spraying short and long passes all over the place. 100 to be precise. Apparently the top six passers of the ball in the game were all Arsenal players. Rambo has one of his best games and looked the Bryan Robson type powerhouse player I thought he could be. Podolski was overall quite and did not have his best game. Cazorla was again superb. City have got Silva, we have Cazorla. Right now I know who I would rather have. What a spot and buy he has turned out. 10/10 Mr Wenger…

Gervinho, well slag him off all you want, but he run his socks off, worked hard and was all over the pitch. If he lost the ball, he went straight back after it. His problem today was being wasteful in front of goal and as he was playing forward I suppose fans will look at his contribution as a forward as poor.

The team are looking solid. Still want to play the passing game and work their socks off for each other. Defence playing as a unit, rather than indivduals. Midfield also working to create but also help out at the back. Once we start to find the net a bit more and they will, we going to have a great side and a bloody season ahead. We might not win silverware this season, but we’ll be a dam sight closer than we have the last few years.

Huge credit again to the away support who stayed with the team the whole way, credit to the club.

Last thought is well done to Mr Dean today who I thought let the game flow. The fact that you did notice him for most of the game for me showed how well he handled the match. Also to the people tweeting disgusting things to Mr. Halsey, you be ashamed of yourselves. Yes there are always bad eggs, but that sort of stuff is way below the belt. If you don’t like refs, and I am not their greatest fan, say they are bad, poor or can’t do the job, but leave it there. No need for that level of abuse.

Coventry up tomorrow. Lets keep the ball rolling lads and then Chelsea at the Emirates. Taking the boy to that one and well-looking forward to it.

Please feel free to comment.

Cheers

@harlowgooner

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Geoff Platt permalink
    September 24, 2012 20:31

    Like you I thought it was a great game, I am pretty happy with the result, I don’t think city where worth a win and definatley not as good as the fortunes of middle eastern monies they have spent would suggest. I’m really impressed with the way the team have started the season and this can only be good for the squad, the way Ramsey played yesterday is proof to that as he might have given Le Boss a selection headache we havnt had for a few seasons!!!

    Am off to the game on Wednesday taking my kids and my parents to the Emirates for the first time as a family, I can’t wait!! The league cup is a great way of opening up the home of football to new generations and others, to give them new memories to file alongside past glories!! To top my night my 8 year old daughter has one a competition to meet the players before the game!! Dad has to go to of coarse, not sure who’s more excited!!
    Keep up the great work,

  2. September 24, 2012 22:23

    Have a great time at the game Geoff. It does make you wonder why when they don’t win the press don’t give them a harder time of it. Hundreds of millions spent, they should be doing well.

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