Arsenal 3 – 0 Aston Villa: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

That was easy then.  Arsenal completely outplayed Aston Villa and won comfortably while cruising through the second half in second gear. The macro-level stats provide a good picture of the game. Arsenal completed 534 or their 608 passes that led to 72 percent possession as against Villa’s 152/226 passes and 28 percent possession. The hosts managed 19 shots that provided the game’s 3 goals. Villa couldn’t find the net with their 3 attempts. Indeed, the Gunners attempted and completed more passes in the Final Third (209/247) than Villa did on the entire pitch.

While Arsenal are clearly the League’s form side and their performance was expected, part of the dominance was also down to the timid and rather archaic approach that Alex McLeish adopted. In his post match interview, the Villa boss said he’d considered playing Weimann up top but went for Heskey because he felt they’d be a bit “lightweight” with Weimann and Ireland. Furthermore, it seemed he was criticizing his players for trying to play the ball out from the back – obliquely citing Arsenal’s second goal as an example – when he wanted them to lump it forward. Of course, he didn’t say it in so many words but the team selection and his thought process in that interview tends to betray his tactical luminosity.

Arsenal too had a surprise in the line-up, not Gervinho for Ramsey – that was to an extent predictable, with Djourou taking the place of Koscielny who woke up with tendinitis. That didn’t affect the defending or the style of play at all as Heskey was hardly a threat. Even though the former English international won all 4 of his aerial duels, he only received a total of 10 passes and completed 8 of his 12 pass attempts in 66 minutes on the pitch. With the lead opposing striker barely involved with the play himself or able to bring others into the game, Arsenal’s defence had a relatively comfortable outing.

In the first half it would not be a stretch to say corners for Arsenal were Villa’s only real attacking opportunities as they broke forward in numbers on more than one occasion. Except an ambitious strike from Albrighton though, the Villains didn’t have much to show for their efforts.

All the action was at the other end of the pitch. As expected, Villa’s full-backs were their weak link that  Arsenal exploited adroitly to get the first  two goals.

Gibbs opened his Premier League account after a delightful exchange of passes on the left between the full-back, Rosicky, and Gervinho who picked up the assist. Gervinho beat Albrighton with clever body movement to create half a yard for the pass. Hutton lost track of his opposing full-back when Gibbs ventured into the inside channel. His shot might have taken a deflection of Collins and there can be arguments that Given should have done better but it would be harsh to take anything away from the young man’s composure or finish.

The second was funny in some ways. It started with a long punt from Szczesny as he aimed a free-kick towards Van Persie in an uncharacteristic manner. Collins easily won it and headed it back to his goalkeeper. Given then rolled it toward Cuellar, again an aberration one might say. There was nothing surprising about Arsenal’s high pressing though as Rosicky charged forward while the other players were tight on their men. This forced an panicky pass from the centre-back. Of course, the quality of Song’s delivery, and that of Walcott’s first touch and finish was simply sublime.

In the second half it did seem like Arsenal had eased off. Villa saw a bit more of the ball while Given wasn’t being tested as often. The Gunners also seemed too casual in the attacking areas as some decent counter-attacking opportunities were squandered.

Arsene introduced Ramsey and Santos with just over 20 minutes remaining. It didn’t change the patterns of play significantly but an error from the Brazilian could have brought Villa back into the game as he gave the ball away to an opponent inside the penalty box. But Weimann, somewhat surprisingly, opted for a square ball across the face of goal rather than a shot.

On the whole Villa looked more secure at the back and were able to push the Gunners into their own half but it wasn’t enough. As is typical, Arsene summed it up well,

It was a controlled performance in the second half, we controlled the game and managed not to concede a goal. Our fatigue came in a bit because we gave a lot at Everton on Wednesday night to win the game.

In injury time, Arteta scored the third with a bullet of a free-kick. Wenger again had something interesting to add,

I prefer it when he takes free-kicks with his laces because he has short feet. Usually the guys who have good inside [of the foot] have bigger, longer feet, and when a guy has short feet like that they are very talented at hitting the ball with their laces. The ball floats a little bit when they take it and I think he is more built to hit the free-kicks like that.

The “floating” free-kicks do remind us of the type that Ronaldo and Juninho specialized in and recently Drogba too has scored from. But as this video by @cwdcomps so lucidly captures, Arteta has himself scored many such goals in the past. Having a dead-ball specialist in the side adds a different threat to the Arsenal. Teams will not find it convenient to foul the Gunners in the Final Third if Arteta and Van Persie build on their abilities. Then again, we must not get carried away by one such blistering strike. Let’s see if the Spaniard can repeat it before the season is over, especially in a crunch situation.

Along with the free-kick there were a couple of other attempts from distance by Arteta and Rosicky that must have stung the palms of Given. Both the players picked the right moments to shoot from distance and executed it well even if it didn’t result in goals. It was an encouraging sight to say the least.

Finally, if I heard it right, the commentator said something about Arsenal winning every Saturday afternoon 3 pm kickoff at home in the last 18 months or so. That, if true, is some stat.

Individual Performances:

Szczesny: Another comfortable game for the young custodian. Didn’t have a save to make but did take a couple of vital catches and made a timely punch. Again there was the odd occasion where his distribution gave the ball away in a semi-dangerous area but it’s getting better.

Sagna: After the battle in the previous game, this must have been a walk in the park for the Frenchman. Again saw a lot of the ball and was joint highest in passes completed (63) as well as passing accuracy (94%). Also won all his ground and aerial duels and the only tackle he had to make.

Djourou: Did well to fill in the boots of Koscielny whose stock has risen steadily over the last few months. Won most of his individual battles (5/7 GD, 2/3 AD) and was strong when needed like the time Ireland was looking to get in behind in a one-v-one but Djourou just shrugged him off. Also made the most clearances, using his height and presence to good advantage.

Vermaelen: Didn’t have as much success in his duels (1/5 GD, 1/4 AD) but was always busy and forced the strikers to work hard. Very composed and dynamic on the ball. It was his pass that found Rosicky between the lines in the build-up to the first goal. And who can forget that delightful diagonal hit that had put Walcott in behind in the 20th minute. Was again involved in the attack with a header that went off target and a couple of chances that he created.

Gibbs: The goal obviously stands out but he has been getting into very good attacking positions and it wasn’t a surprise. Saw a lot more of the ball as Arsenal’s attack wasn’t as skewed to the right side but is still in a learning process and will get into the game more and more as he evolves.

The defenders didn’t have to face many major threats. Even when Arsenal had taken their foot off the gas Villa just didn’t create enough.

Song: Another chip, another assist. Another one who saw a lot of the ball but didn’t have to push forward as much because Villa rarely put him under pressure. Put in a controlled defensive shift in front of the back four winning all 3 tackles and 7 of 11 ground duels.

Rosicky: Was heavily involved in the build-up to the first goal including a simple-looking yet clever pass that registered as another pre-assist to his name. His sprint forced the error from Cuellar that led to the second goal. Overall it was another dynamic effort from Little Mozart.

Arteta: Again clocked the most touches and kept the game ticking. But in this game he also seemed more intent than usual on testing the Keeper. Had four shots and scored a cracker with his last one.

The midfield wasn’t really challenged by Villa. The led the forward momentum in the first half and contributed to the calmer approach in the second.

Walcott: His first touch in this game deserves special mention as it’s usually cited as a weakness. Controlled some long passes really well. His finish showed awareness of the goalposts and technique to place the ball deftly in a way that gave Given little chance. Was a constant threat in the first half but faded away as the play got slower and more casual.

RvP: His work-rate was again top notch. Was a bit unlucky with a goalline clearance and a good save by Given. By his standards it is tempting to nitpick but it doesn’t seem fair.

Gervinho: Got into very good positions and used the ball intelligently. Also tracked back when needed. Should be a confidence boost for him after a difficult time following the Africa Cup of Nations.

Subs: Ramsey was efficient with the ball. Santos looked rusty. Oxlade-Chamberlain was lively.

Wenger: Seems like he is still working on his best attacking combination or it could be that Le Boss wants to wingers at home and an extra midfielder in away games. It’s ok if the players ease off after taking a two goal lead but if they had some predetermined ways to attack they might not be so casual in possession. It’s an area where Arsene can help his team improve.

Before ending I want to share a snippet from an email I received from a friend.

This might probably come as expected to you. But it would come as a surprise to a lot of people I know. Taking inspiration from your Scott Parker post, I just pulled out stats for how premier league table would look if we were to keep the disastrous start (the first 7 games) aside.

Would you have guessed City, Arsenal, and United (game in hand) have picked up the same number of points since the time the Gunners hit rock bottom at White Hart Lane!? No one can simply wish away the start but that table tells it’s own tale, doesn’t it?


39 Responses to Arsenal 3 – 0 Aston Villa: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

  1. Tim says:

    Love the pseudo league table. Equally interesting that Chelsea would be a lowly sixth. It’s been a while since we strolled through a routine home win with a clean sheet like this, so it was a welcome return to old form in spite of Kos’ need problem. Hope he’s back for QPR.

    Nice of Villa to give us the gift that keeps on Given too … 😉

    http://thearmchairsportsfan.com/2012/03/24/gibbs-accepts-the-gift-that-keeps-on-given/

    • santori says:

      Ditto.

      Good work on the table.

      We’re on some run. No reason to believe we can extend it through the last 8 games in the season.

      • santori says:

        BTW, another juicy statistic (and you know how I hate them), all four of our first choice defenderscurrently have scored in the last 6 games.

  2. abiola says:

    this post is very late

  3. Ade David, a Nigerian Gooner. says:

    Great post Desi. Thank God we won. QPR to fall this weekend by the grace of God.

  4. VanTheManPersie says:

    Impressed with the performances bu aston vila were there for the taking and defensively never looked like keeping arsenal out. Am just worried about Kozzer , not sure what “tendinitis” means in terms of recovery time, djourou looks uncomfortable and will struggle against the likes of aguero.
    Other than that, RVP looks a little off his game a little, not just the finishing as he hasnt had real clear cut ones, but has been caught on the ball sometimes, even in the newcastle game, the counter that lead to the goal would not have happened if song wasnt there behind him. Hope he gets a little luck as against quality opposition like city and chelsea, he’s key.

    Very happy with the rest of them, song again with the delightful floater to the wings, he’s making a habit of this. Santos looked rusty and shouldnt be risked atleast till after the City match. Keeping finer crossed for kozzer. The rest looked really lively and we will probably see Gervinho continue in home games against City and Chelsea as his defensive work rate is still better than the ox.

    I know it sounds a little pessimistic, but with city,stoke and chelsea still to go, and 3 more away fixtures, spurs can still leap frog us as they have relatively easier fixtures. Hopefully they have a strong run in the FA cup leading to some fixture pile up, chelsea already have a tough run in. As Arsene says, we need to keep our feet on the ground. If the run has to end, ideally a draw against city is a good way to do it.

    The movement yesterday was amazing to watch with runners everywhere and scoring from a free kick for once, an icing on the cake. Arteta had a shot earlier too and rosicky has had cracks too. Seems like they have been asked to do so and it helps to create gaps for passes, when defenders try to close them down.

    Here’ hoping to a strong finish!! COYG

    • cupsui loves kozzer says:

      Sorry dude i will have to disagree with some of your pessimism there. RvP a little off…thats just a tad harsh.
      2nd City are ripe for the taking and I’m 100% sure wenger is not going out for a draw. We can and i think will beat them…Our midfield is better for sure right now and we have the best striker in the premier league, maybe the world. And theo is in great form, and i think the arsenal defenders will get stuck into samir even if he gets on. When they won 1-0 in city they were the better team but our midfield wasn’t playing like it is now and that is a huge difference. Also Kozzer is a huge asset so hopefully he will be ok.

      • VanTheManPersie says:

        I agree it was harsh but thats just because of the standard of play seen from him before. I’m not concerned about the goals or some uncharacteristic touches, just hoping he doesnt fade because of getting jaded virtually playing the entire season and his game has been lower than the standards set by him. And my pessimism was purely based on our fixtures compared to tottenham and not really because city are superior than arsenal, cause at the moment they arent, if we take silva out of that midfield. Having said that, i beleive we can indeed keep this run going, but it will be tough as it is difficult to win every game in this league. Kozzer/Verms/Van persie’s fitness play a huge role as Jenkinson/Santos can provide soem coveer at Fbs, but i dont want to see much of djourou and god forbid squilacci. So finger’s crossed. Spurs are feeling the heat so hopefully they slip up furthur

      • santori says:

        We cant take City.

        We can take Chelsea.

        We can take Stoke.

  5. MOGunner says:

    As far as league table, Arsenal have had 4 segments to the season.

    First 7 games, 7 points.
    Next 8 games, 22 points.
    Next 8 games, 8 points.
    Last 7 games, 21 points.

    It has been feast or famine. Over 15 games (first and third segments), we have gotten 15 points. Over the other 15 games, we have gotten 43 of 45 points. Some of this due to the quality of opposition (the tougher parts of our season were in the first 7 games and in the 3rd segment of the season with 8 games). Also obviously roller coaster ride of season in part due to injuries, suspensions, people not on team yet, etc.

    Fortunately, the overall quality of our opposition in the next/final 8 games based on opposition performance in the league so far is also pretty light, arguably our easiest patch of the season (maybe slightly more difficult than our second segment, the 8 games when we took 22 points). So hopefully barring another injury crisis we will finish the season strongly.

    • gunner_expat says:

      those are crazy numbers!

      • santori says:

        Jecklyy and Hyde but explainable with the complications of our transfer ‘sagas’ eating into the first seven games and the loss of fullbacks for the second dip.

    • richie says:

      Not quite sure I can agree with your assessment of the run in MOGunner. We’ve got to play both Money Citeh and Chelski in our last 8 games, with those 2 it ain’t gonna be a day at the beach is it? I’d like to see us beat both and the way we’ve been playing lately I’d back us to do just that, but there is always the possibility to drop points playing big teams, so how your calling those last 8 opposition pretty light is beyond me. Moreover its well known that playing those teams stuck in the relegation battle is never easy as they will be fighting for their lives! We play the current bottom 4 in our last 8 hows that light?

      • MOGunner says:

        Yeah, you may be right about playing big teams and relegation battlers at end of the season, all with a lot to play for.

        Subjectively, our schedule does look tricky to me, tougher than the run in for Spurs. But the numbers in terms of home & away form of the teams we play vs. the teams that Spurs play are actually not that different from each other.

        For home games, we have won 77.8% of possible points this year. Here are the % of points won on the road for or final 4 home opponents:
        ManCity 55.6
        Chelsea 44.4
        Norwich 35.6
        Wigan 33.3
        Average = 42.2

        For Tottenham, their opponent average is 30.4, so they definitely have easier home games. But still we are favored to take a decent share of the points in each of our 4 home games. I guess if you have tough opposition, you would much rather play them at home.

        For road matches, we have won 51.1% of possible points this year. For our remaining road opponents:
        Stoke 51.1
        WBA 31.1
        QPR 31.1
        Wolves 24.4
        Average 34.4

        Not sure if I am thinking about this right, but to me it looks like the Stoke match is the only remaining one where we are not slightly to strongly favored to get something from the match.

        For Tottenham, their opponent average is 39.0 for their road opponents, so they play slightly tougher road opponents (where Tottenham is only winning 48.9% of points themselves).

        Chelsea has by far the harder road run in: opponent average = 55.6%. Chelsea has their work cut out for them.

        For our season, here is our opponent average (% points won) for the first 7 matches, then next 8 matches, next 8, next 7, and then our final 8 matches:
        51.2
        40.5
        50.9
        44.2
        38.3

        So actually our opponent average is lowest at the end of the season (although the second segment when we played 8 matches was a little easier because 5 of those 8 matches was at home so we had more of an edge on our opponents).

        Obviously, I am overthinking this. But in terms of trying to find some numbers to use as a basis of projecting results, to me it seems like Spurs might only have a slight edge in their expected results the rest of the way.

        But bottomline, we need to go all out because either way if Spurs regains some form it could be very close at the end. Plus, as you point out, we are playing many opponents who still have a lot to play for at the end of the season.

      • richie says:

        @ OMG all the winning theory’s went out the window we fell at the first hurdle! Its never the dog in the fight its the fight in the dog!

  6. Sam says:

    Arsenal have won 7 matches in a row. To the best of my knowledge no epl team has won 8 matches likewise,not even the two Manchester clubs. I know MC have won 14 matches on the trot at home but home and away is a different matter.I believe the gunners won at least 10 matches on the the way to win the title in1998.
    So Wenger faces a massive challnenge to keep winning.I expect Arsenal to draw /lose at some stage before facing MC and Chelsea. Then hopefully the gunners can ignite the winning sequence and put Redknapp in his place. Before the clash with Arsenal,I had said he was due a blip True enough it happened.
    The boss at OT is due a blip. I can’t wait for it to happen soon.His winning sequence should soon come to an end. Otherwise to first timers of the epl,they will think there is only one team in the epl:Mu and the others don’t matter.
    Btw whoever takes over from the rf,will find it tough to win trophies every season.Yeah we know the rf would like to dominate the cl.He has failed so far and I believe he won’t win another cl trophy till he ha s left.

  7. Byo says:

    Love your writing and analysis.
    How anyone will expect losses against City and Chelsea(both home games) is beyond me. I believe our most difficult match in the remaining schedule is away at Stoke.

    Dont you get tired of some comments that bring god into football conversation?

    • VanTheManPersie says:

      Agreed. Stoke away is probably the toughest fixture because of even the nature of the opposition and their style of play. But thats still a while away and the challenge is to keep this run going as being unbeaten is different compared to winning every game. Maintaining a 100% record is always tougher. But if anyone can do it, its arsene cause when his teams build momentum, they have always ben dangerous throughout his tenure as the boss and we need our full strength team throughout to do that. If Kozzer plays at QPR, lets hope he doesnt get a yellow and miss the next 2

      • santori says:

        I think we are up for it and can take out all 3 of the teams listed.

        In fact if we apply ourselves correctly we can win all 8 remaining matches which added to the 7 on current run will be quite an achievement and would certainly help build a better case for RVP to stay on.

    • richie says:

      I don’t expect loses but we have a really tough final run in and anyone who thinks otherwise needs some grounding. As I stated above the Stoke game will be hard, then both Money Citeh & Chelski are gonna be right up there because both teams want the points badly. Next up every religation threatened team we play will be fighting for their premiership lives, there aren’t any easy games in our last 8 period!
      Face a mid table team and psychologically their players might already have switched off, knowing they can’t make top 4 or Europa and being out of the religation zone there ain’t a lot of motivaion apart from professional pride, but those battling for CL or against religation are motivated.

  8. meaner says:

    “Ramsey was efficient with the ball”

    Really? He created nothing and scored nothing.

    • Steve of Chiang Mai says:

      Desi mentioned nit-picking where RvP is concerned is unfair. In this instance the comment is applicable where Ramsey is concerned. His turn and shoot that went just wide was very classy and I suspect like Walcott for many fans whenever you read the name Ramsey a “negative” perception mode is activated in your brain.

      • santori says:

        Agreed.

        Ramsey is the latest whipping boy.

        As I recall, Song was slated before, then Walcott, Gibbs, Koscielny, Metersecker, Arteta, Gervinho even RVP.

        Good to see some of this nonsense put away by the players.

        Gervinho had a very involved game particularly with his full commitment defensively but has also weighed in with 5 assists this season which is up there with Song and Walcott (considering he mossed a portion of the season due to ACN commitment and this is his first season, impressive indeed)

        Gibbs is beginning to shine going forward and getting better defensively. Thos calling for him to be sold because of his fraility should be remined of where RVP is currently and how long (touch wood) has he gone without any serious knock. Utter nonsense.

        Walcott’s touch for the goal was excellent and I’m happy to see that he is beginning to add a bit of nuance to his play.

        Ramsey is work in progress. Where I think he is a little weak still is defensively. But going forward, the lad is not afraid to poop off a shot which is only to the benefit of our team preventing the Arsnealitis of over elboration from returning any time too soon.

        Arteta has been excellent as a ‘panic buy’ and unshackled from his defensive side now that we have come to grips with that issue better, he is venturing forward more and finding his shooting range.

        There’s an upward progression on the chart. We’ve come back from losing positions (in very tough fixtures) to win games. Then we won a tight one going into the lead first and keeping a clean sheet. Now we’re scoring sufficiently to have some comfort within a game and again a clean sheet.

        Deinfately very encouraging indeed and fully supports the thesis that Wenger has (unsurprisingly to me) built well last summer desp[ite the shennanigans and plugged key holes in the squad.

        Leaving us with this summer to add a couple of top level acquisitions for next season’s push.

    • Bradster says:

      What more did you want Ramsey to do in 20 mins? He held the ball well and passed it around without giving it away dangerously.
      The whole team didn’t pull out of 2nd gear in the second half so why expect more in 20 mins from Ramsey?
      I’ve seen posts before that suggest there are fans that hate certain Arsenal players and will judge them poorly no matter what they do and i think there’s no need for that. The players don’t see these comments, all it does is just upset the others on the bloggers and starts a war of words amoungst Arsenal supporters.

  9. Shiv says:

    Watched the match from 2nd half onwards only. Heard arsenal had already cut villa to shreds. Was disappointed with the second half fare dished out by the gunners. Back to pretty football, are we ? We barely attempted to score, with the direct approach missing. Has VanP gone off the boil ? While we shouldn’t expect him to score in every game, the signs are worrying. Great to see Roscky shooting from distance before Arte showed how its done. Brutal strike for a goal. While DesiG is not a big fan of the make crosses – score goals approach, i feel if the gunners put more bodies in the six yard box, like manure, we’ll be scoring many more goals. Take the Gerv cross in the 57th min – no one to attack at the far post. Wishing our best defender a speedy recovery and hope we don’t ease off in the next match.

  10. Sam says:

    Agree with Shiv about putting more bodies in the 6 yd box. Of course Arsenal must be ready for a swift counter strike. Each team plays different style but the quick counter,if it is well timed and executed can result in goals.
    The gunners are slow in the counter. Too many passes. Of course the one by Song to Walcott was a classic.
    Bear in mind,Song could be shackled in some games. Then what?

    • santori says:

      You were watching a different game.

      We were very quick on the counter considering they were not fully commited forward and always ahd men back. We ripped them to shreds first half. Lost count on the corners.

      Rosicky is always quick to turn with the ball and attack the opposite defender.

      Song was going forward. Arteta less shackled to keeping our once pourous defense tight was going forward. Gervinho was all over the place Walcott was crisp.

      Considering we held the lions share of possession, we had to pick our way through at times but even that was incisive and with better urgency (first half in particular.

      Even late into the second half, the commentators noted that we were supporting Chamberlain’s counter attack in numbers.

      Sorry, not sure what you were watching.

  11. santori says:

    Just like to make an observation that the Gaffer seems to be tailoring some tactical adjustments toward exposing the opposition’s weaknesses now where as (with our earlier travails defending) we were more reliant on a pure 4-3-3.

    we also seem to be devloping a 3-3-3-1 formation when need be to take advantage of our strong right and Gibbs profuse energy levels.

    Last game he seemed to have lined us up to tackle the strength of Everton’s right :

    Sagna…………..Koscielny……….TV……………………
    ……………..Arteta……………….Song……………..Gibbs
    Walcott……………….rosicky…………Ramsey………….
    …………………………..RVP…………………………………..

    This game we set up at the start with a 4-3-3 with Gervinho wide but as the game wore on, overloaded out right with Chamberlain in the 3-3-3-1 :

    Sagna………….Djourou…………TV……………………..
    …………….Arteta……………….Song…………….Gibbs
    Chambo……………rosicky……………Ramsey………
    …………………………RVP…………………………………

    Good to see variation to tactics and I suspect Wenger will continue to innovate as he regains options at fullback and in midfield (Diaby, Jack) not to mention in future with the availbility of two strikers (if Poldy is confirmed)

    Thumbs up from me. Exciting times and good to see us zipping the ball around again in full confidence. Even Djourou looked solid! 😀

  12. santori says:

    Shout to Song. Brilliant distribution. He’s something special.

  13. Odhis KenyanGunner says:

    One: Emile Heskey’s elbow on Djourou was scandalous, to say the least, and i almost smashed in the TV if only to drag out by the scruffs of his neck a commentator who was passionately playing it down, even blaming Djourou for it! I was livid! (Does anyone know if there could be such technology that makes it possible to pass electric shock through commentators by remote controlling the TV? I cant wait for that day. I will electrocute people). That was a red card! …Now that i have gotten that out of the way, i thought Phil Dowd had a generally good game, of course by his (extremely low) standards. Anyone? …Oh, and that Arteta goal is a collectors item! The ball’s float is… surreal! I want to marry his sister!

    • cupsui says:

      yeah that was appalling it was gary neville right? Hesky was not near the ball jumping with flailing elbows…and he smashed it down right on JD’s melon…

      comments on the summer…
      I think the two main targets for Wenger are Podolski and Vertonghen…
      And really we don’t need anyone else.

      Podolski would prob start on the left and be in the rotation a bit and obviously give RvP some relief at the top…so he is perfect and still only 25 or 26 with 1000s of international caps and goals.

      Vertonghen can play CB, LB, DM (and i’ve even heard a little RB if required) and that is exactly what Arsenal need a versatile defensive cover. He will come in for song when he needs rest who hasn’t really had a like for like replacement. Provides brilliant CB cover for TV5, Koz and Merte and then can cover the fullbacks in case of disaster like this year.

      Goetze is a his other main target in my opinion as we lack a true out and out attacking midfielder in the fabregas mould that goetze can be with pace to boot. But this won’t happen. Rosicky’s is definitely amazing right now and filling that whole beautifully and that is why this won’t happen this year (or probably not ever), he is though getting on so either wenger entrusts jack to that position or pursues goetze in summer of 2013.

      Hazard is good but not needed and way over priced, he looks money hungry and will be off to a big club after 1-2yrs even if he did come…exactly whats not needed in the arsenal dressing sheds, cause the team harmony seems epic and i think it will convince RvP/Walcott/Song to resign. Thats why Arsene won’t sign hazard…

      so for me i think two players will come in Podolski and Vertonghen and if they do we can be very happy because the squad will be deep, versatile with adequate QUALITY cover in all positions…and F@*KING CLASS!!

      players to go: Bendtner, Chamakh, Arsharvin, Vela, Squillaci, (Benayoun), Diaby?

  14. Odhis KenyanGunner says:

    Emile Heskey’s elbow on Djourou was scandalous, to say the least, and i almost smashed in the TV if only to drag out by the scruffs of his neck a commentator who was passionately playing it down, even blaming Djourou for it! I was livid! (Does anyone know if there could be such technology that makes it possible to pass electric shock through commentators by remote controlling the TV? I cant wait for that day. I will electrocute people). That was a red card! …Now that i have gotten that out of the way, i thought Phil Dowd had a generally good game, of course by his (extremely low) standards. Anyone? …Oh, and that Arteta goal is a collectors item! The ball’s float is… surreal! I want to marry his sister!

  15. jeff says:

    I believe Song-Arteta-Rosicky combo play a key role for our recent results.. It’s a pleasure to watch song, arteta n in particular rosicky,exchange passes with a single touch n create chances after chances.. U just love to watch them play..

  16. Siva says:

    I too heard the stats about us winning 3 pm kick offs at home for 18 months or so!

  17. coastalgun says:

    One Arsene Wenger; there’s only one Arsene Wenger!

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    Pes 2015 free download pc game http://proevolutionsoccer2015freedownload.blogspot.com/

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