A Hat-trick of Undesirable Hat-tricks

We have now lost three in a row at the City of Manchester Stadium. We have also lost three in a row against English opposition and worst of all we have failed to score in three games against premier league teams. Arsene was not pleased and neither is any fan.

This particular game was always going to be tough. We haven’t won at this ground with our first team so it is not realistic to expect the Carling Cup kids to change things around. Personally, I didn’t care much about results in this tournament as long as the kids put up a good show. That was the biggest disappointment of the night.

Eastmond and Merida were completely out of their league, while Wilshere has picked up the first team bug of roamig all over except where he should really be! I don’t know whether the kids were overwhelmed by the opposition or were just not good enough for the level of the game. They have certainly performed better in the past. At least they could have tried harder. Hopefully, this will be a big lesson for all of them and there is no point in being overly critical of any teenager punching above his weight.

Rosicky on the other hand deserves some criticism. This whole season I have felt that the Czech star has not been doing enough on the pitch. He comes along for a stroll and a few good passes and not to put in a focused, hard working, professional shift. He was partly at fault for the first goal. He was also guilty of too many poor touches whilst his movement was more wanderful than wonderful. I guess this is the reason he hasn’t started the last two matches and on this evidence he will struggle to get a regular place in the side. It’s a shame and a concern as he is one of the experienced players in the squad.

Ramsey and Vela worked hard but didn’t get the support they should have. Wenger also tried taking a leaf from Fergie’s book by playing a strong defence to support the kids. Eboue controlled his forward movement a lot and it’s possible that there were clear instructions to the experienced players to provide cover.

Song was played in the central defensive role and I am hoping it was a decision forced by an injury to Senderos. Arsene has caused enough confusion already by randomly changing positions for Nasri, Rosicky and Diaby. He should not make the same mistake with Song. If big Phil is not injured, it would also mean that we have wasted a year of his career and sold ourselves short in a very important position.

Silvestre, Traore and Eboue did alright in my opinion. They made some mistakes but nothing we don’t already expect from them. A typical Silvestre moment came when he lost the flight of the ball and set Greedybayor free. A last man tackle was needed but even the ref didn’t think this tournament was important enough to merit giving red cards.

Overall the ref was as incompetent as usual. But I am happy Song was not sent off for a supposed block on Ireland. I am convinced that was not a foul and the young England hopeful ran into our Cameroonian just as Bellamy and Greedybayor had done before him. But the ref gave it as a foul and once you cry foul it’s very difficult to say it’s not a red card. The decision might have been different in another competition or if the score had been level.

It’s funny, the number of mistakes we keep making for each goal. For the first one, Rosicky was at fault for losing the ball casually and not sprinting back. If he had, he might at least have distracted Tevez. Song too was at fault for going to ground too early and away from the Citeh striker. Silvestre looked comical when he put his hands behind his back and jumped half a foot. He should have at least put his leg out to try and get a block.

Similarly for the second, Silvestre again passed the ball to a man already under pressure from three opponents. Sanchez Watt was also at fault for casually jogging back when he should have been sprinting back to provide an extra man in defence. Finally Silvestre and Traore got too close to each other and couldn’t push SWP wide enough. In itself, each of these is a small mistake that happens all the time. But when you have multiple mistakes within seconds it’s quite likely to result in trouble, especially, when the opposition has enough quality to find the corners of the goal.

The third goal highlighted further defensive frailties that are a hallmark of this squad. How can an opponent just run through two players, who are supposed to stop him, without using any extraordinary skill, movement or pace? Bellamy just ran between Song and Wilshere and both didn’t know how to stop him. It’s pointless to say both were on a yellow card. In fact, all Song had to do was let Bellamy stick to the flank and wait for a chance to tackle instead of allowing him an opening to cut inside.

I guess the reason Arsene is frustrated is because these are the kind of errors one would not expect from top professionals. Unfortunately, we make these too often and I have a feeling our training methods have to be altered to achieve a drastic improvement as far as these mistakes are concerned.

Frankly, in a way, I am happy that his tournament is behind us. I don’t buy the argument that we should have played a full strength team just to get a meaningless trophy at the end of the day. There is no guarantee that we wouldn’t have picked up another bad injury that could affect other important competitions and there is no guarantee that we would have won a trophy by playing some of the other big players. (For the sake of perspective, Chelsea lost with a much more competitive squad against a much smaller team)

Finally, there is the case of the missing hand shake. I, for one, believe that a hand shake at the end of the game is just a sham. I am happy Arsene said, “That has nothing to do with the game. I am free to shake hands with whoever I want to after the game. There is nothing more to say about it.” It would have been more fun if he’d just said, “Bollocks!” People show enough disrespect through their smirks and other gestures. Respect is a real myth in the modern world of football so the only thing missing was a physical action. Case dismissed as frivolous.

PS: Is Hatrick a word or is it Hat-Trick?


13 Responses to A Hat-trick of Undesirable Hat-tricks

  1. Tazz says:

    Hmm..
    I guess it was typical-Wenger to not shake hands at the end of the game. He is a somber loser and we all know that by now.

    As per the crisis, well, buying our way out of the problem, is the only way now. Arshavin brought some cheers when he first came. We need 2-3 more of similar ilk to rejuvenate our spirits. Else another season goes down the drain.

    I feel Chamakh is the least we need. He is available for a cut-price & is Arsenal-mould. Also, any of Pazzini or Balotelli will do no harm. And please get a damn DM.

    http://11gunners.com/polls/which-striker-should-arsene-buy-in-january/2806/

    PS: It’s hat-trick or hat trick as far as I know!

    • desigunner says:

      Arshavin has incredible talent and was highly motivated. Plus he was a little new to the league so the opponents didn’t know his game. So his impact was different. We are not likely to get similar impact from January signings this year. I am not sure Chamakh is a finished article either. More on this tomorrow.

  2. Jazbo says:

    Intresting game in many ways, when i looked at the team sheet i thought it looked very lightweight and this proved to be the case through out the evening as our boys were constantly being knocked over by the shitty players and the rubbish ref giving nothing (is this eduardo factor).
    I may sound like a sore looser (which i am) but come on, considering how much the shitty team cost to put togather and we had a mixture of reserve and youth team players 6 of which were under 20 years old should i be moaning about a loss in the carling Cup??
    No i should not, but what i am is ver very proud of the fact that at times we gave these overpriced over payed sub B list superstars a footballing lesson.

    As for the hand shake at the end end, no way, I’d rather pick up dog poo than shake that c***ts hand.

    Well done Arsene, next up Stoke !

  3. Saintyjones says:

    I get so upset wen i see people disrespect the carling cup. Its a competition u can win just playin a few matches. Trophies r trophies cos winning one gives u the confidence and impetus to go 4 another. Wenger has to go shopping. January we cant get the best but the end of the season should be. When you have brilliant players in your team, you play remarkably well. Pedro is doing that currently at barca cos he has other good players playing along side him. You cant just play a bunch of kids against top professionals cos they know how best to combine physical skinns and their technical abilities. Inmagine playing ball wit your 12 year old son. Wenger needs to change now

    • desigunner says:

      I think Wenger doesn’t like Carling Cup for precisely that reason, you can win it just playing a few matches. This year its more important as a lot of teams have spent money and need to show something. But I like the Arsenal approach.

      Pedro is riding on the back of other talented players. But Barca don’t play their first team in the copa del rey do they?

  4. bobbygee says:

    Your money statement is this they could have tried harder. This is the key. This is just my opinion. The Gunners lack the fight in the dog. When Aresnal gets down they seem to give up. This is a distrubing trend for me. This needs to be corrected.
    Wilshere showed lots of promise. This kid can be really good.
    Too many mistakes on the defensive end. These were killers.
    The hand shake. For me personally. Do it. I have been in those situations where the team I was coaching got their lunch handed to them. I shook the guys hand and left.
    No BFD.
    I couldn’t watch the match on TV so I listen to it on BBC5 Live. The announcers were great.

  5. harry says:

    Great post again desi. I agree on most points but would argue that defensively eboue and silvestre were piss poor. The captain for the day was slow, his pass was often wayward and his positioning caused song more concerns than the citeh forwards. Eboue with his experience should have being able to hold off bellamy despite his pace.

    Agree on rosicky. His enthusiasm for tracking back and showing the youngsters how to battle back was sorely lacking.
    I thought they did quite well and showed – at least for the first half- the ability to play with the big boys.

    If this match indicated anything it was that we do have a talented group of youngsters. Only time and a bit of luck will enable success.

    It’s worth remembering that three years ago we fielded a line up in the final with traore, denilson, fabregas, diaby, walcott and djourou as sub.

    Oh, and it’s worth noting that this year the chavs and pool also did not field their senior squad.

    Hope citeh take all three points on sat. With the game in hand and no more silly losses we’ll be back in the title picture.

  6. fowler says:

    our players are obviousley going to be out of their league if they werent they would be already playing in the premierleague week in week out.

    why are you being so pesimistic?did you really expect us to beat them?

    dont forget who we were playing against.there team was probably worth £150m.

    lets get behind the side!!!!

    • desigunner says:

      I am not pessimistic at all! In fact I am very happy with the general quality we have at the youth level. Wonder how my writing keeps giving people the wrong impression!

  7. hmmmm says:

    3 matches + 2 titles lost in a span of 4 weeks…typical arsenal…..

    • hmmmm says:

      players are under performing b’coz wenger has a habit of playing them out of position.again again i have repeated same thing…he just want to win his stadium back that’s it….once it happens he will leave…better start consolidating ur 4th spot before it’s too late………

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