Arsenal 2 – 1 Everton: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

What a fight back. When a team can play 11 V 14 and make a comeback like that you know they’re special. This game showed us the best of Arsenal against the worst of typical Premiership Rugby and officiating.

Everton started at a high tempo discussed in the preview. They were pressing high up and not giving the Gunners any time on the ball. Arsenal were a tad slow to move the ball and the off the ball movement wasn’t up to scratch. That gave the Toffees confidence and they created some pressure without really threatening the Arsenal goal.

The first clear chance of the game came in the 16th minute. The Gunners worked the ball down the left channel before Cesc found the run of RvP in the box. The Dutchman sucked in a couple of defenders before playing an intelligent back heel into the path of Fabregas whose shot was off the mark.

In the 22nd minute Walcott had a strike saved by Howard. There was a big gap between the Keeper’s legs but Theo couldn’t find it. Lack of experience perhaps?

The ref had been making a mess of a number of decisions all this while but the real big one came in the 24th minute. Saha made a run with Coleman on the ball. The French striker was clearly offside when the ball was played. The ball came to him via an attempted clearance by Koscielny. Saha scored and the ref, after consulting with the linesman, let the goal stand. It was such a shocking decision that it’s impossible to accept stupidity or ineptitude as an excuse.

In the 32nd minute Arsenal threatened from a corner. Djourou got on the end of a ball that was whipped in with pace at the near post. His header bisected Koscielny and the far post.

Minutes later Rosicky put Cesc through but El Capitan didn’t have the pace to take the ball in his stride past the chasing Rodwell. In the end his strike was tame and wide.

Soon after that RvP got in behind when Wilshere found him with a deft chip. The Dutchman shot wide as he wasn’t able to maintain his balance when he tried to control and shoot in one motion

Everton then had a chance of their own when Arsenal didn’t deal with an aerial ball well enough. Bilyaletdinov got in behind but hit his strike straight at Szczesny who had charged out. The Pole collided with Song in the process and the Cameroonian had to be taken off at half time with a thigh injury.

Diaby came on at half time and Arsenal started the second half at a much higher tempo. Predictably, Everton retreated into their own half and parked their blue bus.

RvP got an early free-kick but his effort lacked venom and direction. Rosicky fired one from distance after a good turn but missed the target. Clichy’s effort from just outside the box was deflected wide. From the resulting corner Rosicky found Diaby but his header, while powerful, was wide. Soon after Howard saved an attempt from Van Persie.

Arsene introduced Arshavin for Rosicky just after the hour mark. The Russian showed he was fired us as he picked out RvP in the box with a deft chip. The Dutchman again missed the target while trying a difficult turn and shoot trick. Diaby was the next to try his luck after a decent run across the edge of the box. He went for power rather than precision and got power while missing the target.

Wenger made his final change by introducing Bendtner for Wilshere.

Arsenal were piling on the pressure and one could sense a goal was coming. The first one came in the 70th minute after an intelligent run from Arshavin. Cesc chipped it and the Russian finished with extraordinary coolness.

Bendtner then tested Howard with a bicycle kick after a brilliant long pass from Cesc caused havoc in the Everton box. By now Arsenal were completely on top and even the Emirates crowd was showing signs of life! Jokes aside, the crowd did a decent job of telling the officials what their decisions were worth.

The winner came in the 75th minute. Another simple yet beautiful goal from a corner. RvP whipped it in and Koscielny nodded home as he was unmarked on the six yard line.

I was a bit disappointed Arsenal didn’t go for the kill but it would be extremely harsh to be critical of this performance. They eased off but never looked vulnerable at the back. In fact, Arsenal seemed to dominate corners and set-pieces on both ends against a side that thrives on them.

Before moving to the individual analysis, I want to make a special mention of the commentators and the broadcasting crew. They didn’t show the replays of Arteta elbowing Jack in the face, or Walcott being cynically scythed down when running away on a break, or countless other unpunished fouls by Everton. In contrast, Fabregas’ foul on Arteta (certainly deliberate and deserving a yellow card) was analyzed in detail. The commentators took bias and bigotry to incredible levels all through the game. I can’t believe I have to pay to suffer such torture.

Individual Performances:

Szczesny: He’s a work in progress, didn’t command his box as well as he should have, decision making was not very good, wasn’t forced into making any great saves but that’s not his fault. Didn’t make any major mistakes but the Pole will have to show a faster learning curve.

Sagna: Worked hard in defence. Was a bit weak in the air but that’s understandable. More than made up for it with tenacity.

Djourou: He did well to win some physical battles but then seemed to lose track of the ball allowing the attacker to get past him. Deserves credit for hard work and for winning balls in the air.

Koscielny: Excellent. Really hounded Saha whenever the striker got on the ball on his side. Never let Saha turn or get past him. Read the game well and made his usual tackles and interceptions. His goal was the icing on the cake. Very close runner for MotM.

Clichy: Superb. Coleman is highly rated but Clichy had him in his pocket. Great energy, anticipation, tackling, and passing. Did well in attack. Gibbs can learn a lot from the Frenchman.

I thought the defenders struggled with some balls in the air and also due to the fact that the players in front of them are not as well organized as the other top teams. It’s a long standing problem so I don’t want to get into it right now but the back five deserves a lot of credit for this clean sheet (goals scored by officials don’t count in my book)

Song: Worked hard in the first half but didn’t do enough to bring the ball out from defence. I don’t blame him as I see it as a problem with the tactical system. Struggled a bit physically but made up for it with extra effort.

Cesc: Found a special pass to unlock Everton. Played more quality passes than the whole Everton team combined. Good to see the kick on Arteta (I don’t like it and don’t approve of it but I hate the way Everton played and the officiating a lot more). MotM in my book for controlling the midfield in the second half, his assist, passing, and work rate.

Wilshere: Struggled physically. One good pass for RvP but overall his passing was a bit off.

In the first half the midfield didn’t support the defence as well as I’d have liked. Didn’t win many second balls and struggled to bring the ball out from the back. Much better in the second half once Everton retreated.

Walcott: Baines did a decent job on him for large parts but Theo was a threat all through the game. Was cynically fouled time and again. Should have occasionally swapped positions with Rosicky in the first half. Did a decent job of adding another body in defence.

RvP: Good movement, good touches around the box, decent passing, was just lacking his finishing boots. Good contribution while defending set-pieces. Put in some excellent corners.

Rosicky: Looked good when he came inside but didn’t do enough in the first half. Could be down to rustiness and the fact that he’s been played all over the midfield. Needs better off the ball movement but it has to come from training and instructions from the coaches.

The front three were lively in the first half but the finishing was lacking. They were much more threatening in the second half after the midfield controlled the game better.

Subs: Arshavin made a major impact with his positioning and passing. Showed real desire to chase the ball, took his goal really well. Diaby was strong when on the ball and added a physical presence in midfield. Bendtner made his presence felt in the box but should have done better on a couple of occasions.

Wenger: Picked a balanced starting eleven. Made the right substitutions. Must have given the perfect half time speech as the team that was a bit agitated and rattled in the first half showed a lot more composure and purpose in the second. I know some will claim that Arshavin should have started but we will never now how he would have played when the midfield was not controlling the game and others were edgy.


58 Responses to Arsenal 2 – 1 Everton: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

  1. Tim says:

    Not a pretty win, but as you say a great fightback and exactly the kind of game we would have lost in previous seasons.

    Although we had been applying pressure for a while, Arshavin’s arrival turned the game. For all his critics, he has been working hard in recent games to try and dig himself out of his slump, and his goal tonight was superbly taken. As the saying goes, form is temporary but class is permanent, and for all his faults Andrey is definitely class.

    After Newcastle this weekend, our next 3 league games are at home – whereas 4 of Unite’d next 5 are away. We have every chance of closing the gap at the top if we can just keep grinding out results.

    http://thearmchairsportsfan.com/2011/02/01/arsenal-comeback-keeps-them-in-the-title-hunt/

    • desigunner says:

      Completely agree, the gap can be closed, especially with Chelsea coming back to form. The real challenge for Arsenal will be to survive the physical games. Top players have to stay fit till the end of the season. The last two games have been ominous on that front.

      • santori says:

        Both Song and Jack looked a little off pace today.

        I think you may be right that they were a little too advance which did not help.

        Looking forward to your analysis Desi as to our tactics.:)

  2. Jonathan says:

    11 v 14 for sure… What a performance. Games like this confirm just y i have come to love this team. I was really excited to see how the crowd got behind the team, got on the refs who were TERRIBLE, and chanted Arshavin’s name instead of the booing him

  3. JJ Pittman says:

    Hard to beat 14 with 11(actually only 13) other linesman was okay! Flag should have flown up immediately. Physical error? Poetic justice! Kosc gets the winner. AA all he should be.
    Big heart in my mouth: Djourou goes down; looks like a separated shoulder(tell me it didn’t!) Great to be a Gooner! We had them all the way(yeah, right)

  4. Phv says:

    Rodwell gifted us both goals.Thank you very much.He is overrated like the rest of the English players.

  5. golds73 says:

    Refereeing was utter cr*p. Unbelievable really!

    The commentators were also cr*p. How they tried to justify a late challenge by Fellaini on Walcott, near the end of the game, was utter rubbish.

    Sometimes felt like the whole world was against us. Yet we still came out winning. Absolutely loved it when we scored! Great result and great character shown by the team.

  6. MSL says:

    *The game was so edgy and ref so biased I am glad we didn’t have one more sending off.
    *Diaby was excellent today. AA23 is finding his mojo again.
    *You are right about the commentary. The younger sounding voice was much better but that English guy made me want to punch him. Its Fox Sports so they will cater to the crowd. Tells you something about England?
    *This game is again one of those which we can call – a stepping stone. The ref’s decision did have an upside to it after all :).

    PS: This has been the best transfer window so far?

    • santori says:

      I must have been watching the same feed.

      That commentator was slightly biased against us.

      He spent an inordinate amount of time whinging about Cesc asking for the ball to be put out on behalf of the downed Walcott.

      Had it been everton, he would have gone on about how they had every right to slow the game down.;)

    • desigunner says:

      Yes this game can be a stepping stone but the key will be to not take any backward steps now. At times, Arsenal do have this issue of taking two steps forward and one back.

  7. SoCal_Gun says:

    definitely a match that the team from the last few years WOULD NOT HAVE WON….this team is definitely different, and continues to improve each year

    Cesc says he won’t leave till he brings Arsenal a trophy…..hopefully this year’s Carling Cup won’t count for him, because with another year or 2 max they can win everything like Barca did a few years ago

  8. ak47 says:

    missed second half!!!! gutted!!! yet another example of why vid tech wil not be introduced. the ref tried his best, bless his cotton socks.:-) no brucie bonus for you! nelson.

    even the biased muppets found it extremely difficult to support the decision.
    tho they tried!:-)

    thank you lord for the come back, if any team deserve the prem, its us!!
    no bias 🙂 honestly.

    im off to look 4 highlights. one.

  9. Northbanksy says:

    The team were good tonight but the crowd inside the Emirates were brilliant & that’s what made the difference. For once the “twelth man” actually showed up, got behind the players & on the backs of the opposition team rather than their own players.

    • desigunner says:

      Yeah I was pleasantly surprised by the response from the crowd. Just shows that if they want to they can make a difference.

  10. IndianGunner says:

    If i was anywhere near that linesman or Mason i would have ripped his throat out. How many fowls did mason not give to us i lost count and ultimately we lost Song and Theo to knocks which should have been avoided if he had properly carded Felliani and the others lowlifes

    And to top it off Moyes has the guts to talk about Cesc. Useless hypocritical fool. He advocates a style of rotational fouling and has issues with what some player says off field

    Anyways a good win by the boys. I just hope we don’t start seeing a string of bad officiating against us as the crunch time approaches. Hope the boys recover from the knocks quickly and carry on fighting in the same spirit

    Cheers to all Gunners!!!

    • santori says:

      Oi…you would have gotten more than a red card for that infraction. 😀

      I wouldn’t have mind if you had done it to Phil Neville though on account that he is Phil Neville.

    • desigunner says:

      I don’t know about ripping someone’s throat out but I might have gone and slapped the fellow. I guess we have to appreciate the manner in which the players deal with such setbacks even more considering how we would react in such situations.

  11. Tee Song says:

    Mason and the match commentators were pure and utter crap. Once it became clear that Mason was going to be very lenient on Everton, they really started to get “stuck in.” Felliani used every pro wrestling tactic short of the flying drop kick to “muscle” Arsenal off the ball. Meanwhile, the commentators were practically having an orgasm screaming about dominant he was in midfield. I guess if you’re allowed to push, kick, and body slam opposition players, you’ll boss the midfield pretty well.

    The game turned in the second half as Arsenal upped the tempo of their passing. It was almost a measure of self defense as Everton couldn’t get close enough to wrestle them off the ball. Diaby also helped to reestablish control in the midfield as he replaced the injured but strangely ineffectual Song. Once we started winning the midfield, Arshavin and then Bentdner added the forward impetus to bring us over the line.

    This was exactly the type of game this team might’ve lost a year or two ago. Physical, well organized opponent, lenient ref, calamitous goal conceded. That they were able to wrest control of the game and force a win bodes well for the home stretch.

    • Ajinkya says:

      Mr.Tee Song,
      i want to rate you up a thousand times for that orgasm comment.

    • santori says:

      You can’t fault Everton.

      I didn’t think that they were employing 15 a side rules.

      They (rightly) congested the midfield with 5 across and Felaini did very well to mop up a lot of our balls.

      Partially, we were not going out wide enough.

      We stretched it out a little earlier on with Walcott and had some good opporunities but Rosicky was a little off pace out left. This is where Arsharvin would have made the difference (as he did later)

      But kudos to Everton. They came at us unlike City and gave us a couple of decent scares I thought.

      • Arsenal4 says:

        if you compare to city .. then any team will deserve a kudos 😉

      • Tee Song says:

        Playing 4-5-1 to congest and press the midfield is a legitimate strategy and a good one to use against us. I don’t have a problem with that. A ref allowing opposition players to wrestle us off the ball is quite another. In my opinion, Mason was terribly biased, especially in the first half. As much as anything, this allowed Everton to press very effectively.

      • desigunner says:

        I agree with Tee Song. I don’t have a problem with their pressing or strategy per se, but the ref allowed far too many pushes and kicks to go unpunished. Once the rules are relaxed in this manner it becomes a different ball game, so to speak 🙂

  12. Ajinkya says:

    The first half almost reminded me of the match against manu when they ended our unbeaten run. Fouls being awarded to the opposition, soft yellow cards to our players. On top of that, they get a goal when saha was offside(former manu idiot after all).
    Commentators, don’t get me heated up again.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2011/feb/01/cesc-fabregas-david-moyes
    Of course, when you can’t play, you try to get rid of the key players in the opposition, and why not when everyone is on your side? alex tactics. He has his dark influence on this game.
    As for free mason, lee mason, whoever he is, the analysts must be complaining about guys like these rather than the woman, who gave correct decisions.
    We gave a good reply, by fielding our big guys, and one little guy who made the difference.
    Andrey, man, i thank THEE!

    • santori says:

      Just to keep you perculating, that plon.ker of a commentator made a big meal about how Everton have the knack of beating the top teams when out of almost 40 encounters, they’ve only ever done us over 4 times. He failed to mention the 7-0 trashing we handed them not to mention that we already beat them back at Goodison this season.

  13. SomeRandomGunner says:

    Desi,

    Of all things i was really happy with the commitment shown by the strikers in defending when
    we went into our panic 4-2-4 mode. All 4 Walcott,RVP, Bendtner,Arshavin showed their commitment and were always willing to help out in defense. RVP especially became the 3rd midfielder and worked his socks off, at one point we were outnumbered in defense and Bendtner came all the way back to defend. Arshavin did that too.

    This team is hungry , talented and committed to the cause.

    On another note I love Cesc in deeper roles , it is impossible to stop him from there. How many goals have we scored off late from his long accurate passes ? Especially with 3 great off the ball runners in Walcott,Bendtner, RVP Cesc is lethal from deep positions with bit more time.

    • In moderation again ………..

    • desigunner says:

      Yeah good point about defending by the strikers. I should have covered that. Overall the spirit and hunger seems to be really high and even the huddle after Koscielny scored highlighted that.

      Cesc has always been lethal from deep, that’s how he’s started his career at Arsenal. I feel Wilshere and Ramsey can take that over soon enough and Cesc can offer a lot more in the final third.

  14. santori says:

    My nails are almost completely diminished and my hair has had a trim in patches.

    This was a close one.

    Everton were very organised and strangled us in midfield (First Half). Particularly, Felaini was very good and with five across, it didn’t help that we lobed balls in high for the Belgian to mop up.

    Also young Jack really struggled today against Fellaini. I would have thought Wenger might have taken him off and put in Diaby for more physical bite. As it was Diaby came on anyway for Song (Hope he doesn’t need a Placenta rub down too)

    Say what you want but I thought Andrei should have started. Rosicky showed glimpses of merit but I think Andrei has the right attitude at the moment and despite his seeming languid composure, his contributions are always telling.

    We lacked that extra bite until he came on. With Barca looming, my pref wold be to have Arsharvin play as much as possible to work through his funk. Hopefully this goal will restore his confidence levels somewhat.

    agree with comments on the grit and tenacity shown. I like the extra bite El Capitan (and RVP) are playing with. I don’t know about Wenger’s half time (portable low wattage) hair dryer but you can feel the genuine desire in the players (even in the first half) to get on with it and knock the door down.

    Also great to see Fab barking instructions from midfield. Is he growing into that leader that we so desperately need. Let’s hope! 🙂

    • desigunner says:

      On his website Arshavin said this was the first time in his career he’s been on the pitch twice in three days 🙂

      I think the fact that the Russian worked really hard against Huddersfield might have influenced Wenger’s decision.

      I don’t think Wenger would have given a hairdryer even a low wattage one 🙂 More likely to be very composed and to the point instructions.

  15. santori says:

    Just a couple of questions too :

    1) Why is it RVP has to get himself involved with taking the corners from out right all the time? Surely we could do with that extra height in the box?

    2)Why have we not scored many goals from set pieces of late? RVP came very close but me thinks apart from Fab and him (Vermaeln being injured still), we don’t have many options in this department for some reason. Perhaps this is an area Dennilson can work on.

    3)Why is it that when defending high balls into the box, we invariably head the ball back out into the danger area. It’s all well and fine if the defenders know (and can see) our players waiting for the clearance but surely when in doubt, best to head it back out sideways and away from front of goal.

    4)Why did Clichy not lash that shot one on one with Howard? Case of Arsenalitis I suppose but (again) someone (Monsieur Henry Sil Vous Plais) should tell the lads to give a good crack when in that sort of situation, you never know where it might go, might have yourself a Bendtner.:D

    • desigunner says:

      I don’t think we have anyone else who can deliver set-pieces like RvP. It’s related to your point about taking direct free-kicks as well.

      Looking at the game again I thought Bendtner should have made a run to the back post. That would have given Clichy an easy pass across rather than a tougher cut back.

      Your 3rd point is something I have often talked about but off late I’ve seen our players knock it out for corners as well. I guess it will come once the confidence in defending those increases.

  16. santori says:

    Just want to add that I am bloody relief today and that’s an understatement.:P

  17. FoolishgooNer says:

    All I wanted was three points and I got it. The second half was much better because we copped with everton”s power. We had diaby nb52 plus kol and dj all above average high! We dominated set Pieces and hold up play and allowed our skill but smallish players time. For once we didn’t have Cecs Jack defending against Saha fallaine and big defenders. Much credit to the boss for subs timing and personell. Against new castle three points is all is needed. Let’s hope song and theo are ok. Cheers mates.

  18. awtachew says:

    gunners the true fighters . god in the bible says i gave u a hand ,an eye ,a leg etc so work & get life with out cheat, that is what arsenal is doing biased ref.

  19. Desi,

    Of all things i was really happy with the commitment shown by the strikers in defending when
    we went into our panic 4-2-4 mode. All 4 Walcott,RVP, Bendtner,Arshavin showed their commitment and were always willing to help out in defense. RVP especially became the 3rd midfielder and worked his socks off, at one point we were outnumbered in defense and Bendtner came all the way back to defend. Arshavin did that too.

    This team is hungry , talented and committed to the cause.

    On another note I love Cesc in deeper roles , it is impossible to stop him from there. How many goals have we scored off late from his long accurate passes ? Especially with 3 great off the ball runners in Walcott,Bendtner, RVP Cesc is lethal from deep positions with bit more time.

  20. Metalhead says:

    Let me give it a shot 🙂

    1) Why is it RVP has to get himself involved with taking the corners from out right all the time? Surely we could do with that extra height in the box?

    #I think the logic behind it is that when the ball is kicked from the right hand side by a left footed player (from the inside of the foot) the ball tends to bend towards the goal thus giving momentum (towards the goal)for any incoming player to head it in. I don’t think RVP can’t head the ball very well anyway and I feel the delivery of the ball is more important (which he is good at). If you can put it in that tricky area, trust me even if you don’t have tall guys it still makes a huge difference.Although it is technically possible for a right footed player to bend the ball towards the goal by kicking with the outside of his foot, if requires a lot of skill. I’m cool with RVP taking corners.

    2)Why have we not scored many goals from set pieces of late? RVP came very close but me thinks apart from Fab and him (Vermaeln being injured still), we don’t have many options in this department for some reason. Perhaps this is an area Dennilson can work on.

    #Difficult to pin point a specific reason. I think aerial strength is a lot about technique. Of course height does matter. I think it is a combination of both. Earlier we had Bendtner, Adebeyor, Gallas, Vermaelan all good headers of the ball. RVP is poor in the air, so is Cesc, Arshavin, Walcott, Wilshere, Clichy. Probably Song, Sagna and the CB’s are the only ones good enough. The more players you have who the head the ball well, better the chances of scoring from set pieces. Having that that even our dead ball conversion rate has been poor. Gone are the days when Henry and Pires used to knock them in for fun.

    3)Why is it that when defending high balls into the box, we invariably head the ball back out into the danger area. It’s all well and fine if the defenders know (and can see) our players waiting for the clearance but surely when in doubt, best to head it back out sideways and away from front of goal.

    #I think our defenders do that because they tend to panic. It doesn’t help when you have an inexperienced goalkeeper in Szczesny. Not that I’m criticizing him but I think if you have a commanding GK he can bail the defenders by just collecting the ball. Easier said than done. It’s just a question of experience and confidence. I think Almunia is lot better in dealing with looped in balls to the box. He collects them confidently unlike the other two.

    4)Why did Clichy not lash that shot one on one with Howard? Case of Arsenalitis I suppose but (again) someone (Monsieur Henry Sil Vous Plais) should tell the lads to give a good crack when in that sort of situation, you never know where it might go, might have yourself a Bendtner.:D

    #You said it. It’s Arsenalitis. Would have been on the best goals of the season if he had scored

    • JJ Pittman says:

      Very good technical responses! Sometimes I think people think they are only posting rhetorical questions, so kudos to Metalhead for well thought out answers to good questions. This is what blogs should be!

    • santori says:

      @metalhead

      1) But we have others who can whip in a decent ball with their left foot. Arsharvin for one. Rosicky. Why handicap ourselves when we are not the biggest team on the park. Better to have the extra height in the box I say.

      2) Set pieces, I actually meant specifically free kicks. We used to score heaps during Henry’s days.
      Hopefully RVP gains back some of that swagger but again, we need alternates (at least one more) to Fab, RVP (and injured Vermaelen).

      3) Defending. If we don’t remedy this quickly, we will be taken to the cleaners by Barca.

      They will exploit the second ball and they have the quality to kill us.

  21. Kubla Khan says:

    It is Diaby who controlled the midfield and made the difference but perhaps we were watching different games?

    Everton stuck to their game plan, they usually score from set pieces, Cahill is their main scorer, Saha is a flair player who is lost in this team and Fellaini is a type that Arsenal should have: big, hard and a passer.

    Arsenal have injuries, United fly, Chelsea are aiming to win with strong and excellent signings; as for Arsenal, may be the Carling- that- wa- for -kids-cup and hopefully a top4 finish. A satisfied Wenger and his chairman and Gazidis. Unhappy fans but who cares for them.

    • desigunner says:

      I thought Diaby added strength to the midfield but he didn’t have the passing range or movement to control the midfield.

  22. arsenalist says:

    what a great win…..but i think
    -rvp is not a striker….he should play with chamakh or bendtner….they can give him too much space and they can use his corners especially chamakh
    -diaby is a must against the likes fellaini
    -walcott should not start all the games..especially when the bus is parking
    -koscielny will be the best defender in the epl next year…he has something special
    -our young goalkeeper is amazing in one to one…SPIDERMAN _)))

  23. critic says:

    guys, don’t want to be a party pooper but what was the difference between
    walcott’s goal against charity where essien touched the ball before walcott collected it from offside position and lashed it in.
    And
    Saha’s goal last night?????

    But, referee was utter sh*t, allowed rotational fouling, booked any one randomly,

    Ironically enough, so called best league in the world has worst referees of this world.

    • critic says:

      by the way desi, do reply to my mail….

      • critic says:

        @tee song
        thank u, but i guess fifa themselves haven’t stated any definite offside rule.

        Backward movement :
        If suppose saha is offside, kozzer back passes and saha interrupts. will it be offside?

        backward/forward movement :
        If saha is offside, kozzer is taking the ball forward, saha comes from offside position and wins the ball, that will be certainly offside, i guess??

        However in our case ball neither went forward nor backward(strange argument, i know). Rather it went perpendicular to both directions.

        And it’s a universal fact that we never get 50:50 decision in our favor.

      • Tee Song says:

        @critic If a defender, who is in control of the ball and has possession, passes it back to another defender or the goalkeeper and an opposition player, from an offside position, intercepts that pass, that is not offsides. I suppose the confusion concerns whether the act of a deliberate clearance or block is equivalent to a PASS. Intuitively, I think most people would agree a defensive block is not equivalent to a pass. I think a defensive block or clearance is more similar to goalkeeper’s save. And it’s very clear that if a keeper saves a shot which then rebounds to a player who was in an offsides position when that shot was taken, that IS offsides. That call actually violated all three aspects of the offsides rule. Horrible, horrible, horrible call!

    • Tee Song says:

      i’d have to look at replays but my recollection is that Theo wasn’t in an offside position, he was just much quicker to react. I went to FIFA’s website and watched the boring, insipid video explaining the offsides rule. In it, there is an example of exactly what happened in the game. The comment says if the defender “touches the ball” and it is then played by an offensive player who was in an offside position, that is gaining an advantage and therefore offside. There is no specific mention of whether that touch has to be inadvertent or deliberate. So for me, unless someone can cite a source which specifies a deliberate defensive clearance then plays him onside, Saha was guilty of offsides. Koz didn’t control the ball, gain possession and then pass it accidently to Saha, he did what any defender would do and tried to clear it away. Therefore, for me, it’s the same passage of play.

  24. […] Arsenal 2 – 1 Everton: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis What a fight back. When a team can play 11 V 14 and make a comeback like that you know they’re special. This game […] […]

  25. richie says:

    Hey DG nice analysis.
    I’ve never visited your blog B4
    in fact I clicked on it by mistake. I’m an old Gooner of long standing from an old Gooner family. I was raised opposite the Highbury stadium. For someone who came to the Arse in only 99 you’ve picked up plenty.
    Its great to find that the Arsene revolution has spead so far and wide. 2 points of order 1st Henry has to be as closest as Gooners we can get to the great Sachin TD. 2nd in light of bad decisions where neither ref nor assistant got it right, don’t you think its a shame that the Ref’s can’t do what a great umpire can and should do if unsure after consulting,call for a referral?

    • desigunner says:

      Welcome to the blog and thanks for the kind words.

      Arsene revolution has certainly reached far and wide. I won’t be surprised if in a few years India has more Gooners than England. No disrespect, just a function of population 🙂

      Henry certainly comes very close to Sachin. The main difference I’d say is that Sachin played for some really weak teams carrying them alone (also fought alone during the match-fixing days) while Henry spent his prime in a strong team. Not trying to take anything away from Henry but it is tougher to perform when others around you are not that good.

      I’m in favour of a tennis/cricket style referral system. One or two referrals per team per half only for big decisions like Penalties, goals, red cards. That way the game won’t be slowed down and big decisions when wrong won’t affect the outcome.

      • richie says:

        Exactly! I don’t want to slow things down the EPL is the most exciting league there is, but a proper limmited referal system maybe like tennis? is needed. Technology’s been available for an age if only the will was there.

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