07 November 2015

Open Letter to Tottenham Hotspur

Dearest Tottenham,
Let me begin by saying this post might be considered apostasy among Arsenal supporters, because they find it in the appropriate levels of scorn, derision, or "Scum" bashing. Don't get me wrong. I'm a Gooner through and through and have been since the age of seven. I just don't buy as much into it the hatred of our rivalry as much as I supposedly should. It's not like I'm missing for reasons why. I've turned my footballing hate on other, bigger targets more truly deserving of it. Chelsea, for example.

06 November 2015

Can Arsenal score on a surprisingly stout Spurs defense?

There's nothing quite like a North London Derby to angry up the blood, and we could do with a little fire in the veins after that trip to Munich. In past NLDs, we could count on some high-scoring affairs, if only because Tottenham seemed content to run around like headless chickens. However, they've tightened up a bit, dropping their goals conceded per game from 1.39 last season to just 0.82 to this point. However, we've been averaging four goals per game in our last four Prem matches, which gives someone among my UK readers a chance at winning some swag. In the comments-section below, simply claim one of the six cells below.  If Joe comments, "Joe wants A" and a Gunner scores to that area, you'll win £10. A second goal gets you a pre-order of Football Manager (to be shipped in November when it's actually out). A third goal scored there? Your choice of a 2016 Arsenal jersey (home, away, or third). See more of the rules below...

  • Each reader is only allowed one square, no multiples.
  • Entries will not be accepted from blog owner, contributor or employees of Paddy Power.
  • Squares will be allocated to the first 6 people to comment on available squares.
  • The BBC’s definition of which square the ball went into is final, this can be found on BBC Football news http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/results.
  • Prizes are subject to availability.
  • Only one prize per square.
  • Only the first 5 goals are counted.      
  • UK entries only.
  • If the match score is 0-0 the first to comment on the original post will win the booby prize, a Danny Dyer Football Foul-Ups DVD.
Got it? Good. I know we want our lads to score goals for only the purest of purposes
—to deliver victory to the Arsenal—but it's nice once in a while to pick up a little swag for ourselves! Get to it!

04 November 2015

How do you dodge a problem like Europa?

So. That's about it, then. With one depressing, catastrophic loss, our hopes of advancing past the group stage lie in a dilapidated heap. Scoring one goal clearly wasn't enough, not as the visitors against a more-determined home side. I speak, of course, of Dinamo Zagreb's capitulation in Greece, where, despite taking an early lead, they lost and thereby all but obliterated Arsenal's hopes of advancing. Our own loss in Munich is water under a bridge. A point might have been nice, but, we knew by halftime that this was out of the question. In fact, the less said about our own performance, the better...

Bayern have never faced an Arsenal as in-form as this one. Bayern 0-4 Arsenal, confirmed

We've had our fair share of run-ins with Bayern, and, let's be honest: each time, we've come up holding the short end of the stick. However, Bayern have never faced an Arsenal squad boasting of this kind of form, at least not in the last few seasons. In the Bundesliga, Bayern are little more than flat-track bullies, battering their opponents into submission and snatching up those players who flash the temerity to show them up. The flip-side to this is that they rarely if ever come up against a squad with the talent or tooth to take them to task. Enter the Arsenal. Depsite these Bavarian bullies' bluster, we've held our own, almost upending them in stunning fashion—and they've not had to deal with us in the form we're in, not even a few weeks ago when we battered them to the tune of a 2-0 scoreline.

01 November 2015

Rivals' Rundown: can Arsenal overtake Man City?

Another brilliant week keeps us level on points with Man City while humiliations galore accrue to José Mou, and Arsenal alone, at least for this week, look ascendant. For the sake of simplicity going forward, I'm going to focus on the four clubs most likely to challenge for the Prem title. While that slate will undergo changes over time, it's safe to assume that we can for now overlook Leicester and West Ham, but it does also mean that we've have to keep a wary eye on Liverpool, who look a bit livelier under Klopp. Before we get too deep into details, let's savor the bigger picture...

That's why Campbell is mm-mm good!

Well. I guess we have our right-wing sorted for the next eight to ten years now, don't we? After much wringing of hands and gnashing of teeth, we're spared the rending of garments for at least a few days after Joel Campbell turned in a confident performance in a vital 0-3 win at Liberty Stadium, scoring his first goal for Arsenal a mere four years after signing for the club. More than that though, from the opening minutes it seemed clear that he was bound and determined to prove a point, and prove it he did. That his goal came as icing on the cake more than as main course is beside that point.