02 December 2017

Arsenal 1-3 Man U: Vote for Player Ratings & MOTM!

Arsenal conceded two sloppy goals in the first ten minutes, all but gifting the match to the visitors before it had even begun. Minutes into the second half, though, Lacazette found a goal to breathe some hope back into the squad. It was short-lived, however, as Lingard scored again. Even a straight red to Pogba for a studs-up "tackle" on Bellerin didn't invigorate us enough to find a way past de Gea although he was tested on several occasions. It's a disappointing result, obviously, as it suggests yet again that we're not quite cut from the kind of cloth that champions or even contenders wear. So it goes. We'll have to dust ourselves off quickly and get right back to work after this setback. More on that later. For now, let's rate the lads...

01 December 2017

Mou, Man U, and Malignant Narcissism (oh, and Mkhitaryan, too).

José, José, José. Poor little Mou-Mou. No matter how much those sugar-daddies spend, it's never quite enough, is it? How can one be expected to contend for silverware after only having spent—what was it? Oh, yes—£148 million to improve a squad that was already worth more than the GDP of 42 actual countries.This is part of a disturbing trend on Mourinho's part, but this is not yet another post on the oiligarchies that have infected football or of the financial steroids that certain clubs are on. Instead, we're here to look at something much more personal than that. We're here to peer into Mourinho's soul. Bring your antibacterial, kids; this could get messy.

29 November 2017

Arsenal 5-0 Huddersfield—Vote for Player Ratings and MOTM!

Alexandre Lacazette opened the scoring just three minutes in, finishing from a slotted pass from Aaron Ramsey, and that's where it stood until halftime. In the second half, however, the floodgates flew open as Giroud, on for Lacazette, bagged a brace to which Alexis and Özil added goals of their own. All in all, it was a domineering performance of the sort that we just haven't seen yet against smaller sides, against whom we've eked past or slipped up against. We've opened up a bit of space and keep pace with Chelsea and Man City, who also won today. More on the bigger picture later; for now, let's rate the lads!

Arsenal-Huddersfield Preview: Can Arsenal climb to third in the Prem?

A weekend that was both exhausting and exhilirating for very opposite but parallel reasons leads to Wednesday's clash. Arsenal, of course, might have a spring in their step after nabbing a late and controversial winner against Burnley. Huddersfield might very well feel hard done by after seeing a potentially glorious result slip away after City found a controversial equaliser and rather-lucky winner. Whether they can bounce back in short order will be a pressing question, all the more for a side that has not won away from since matchday one, beating woeful Crystal Palace. Arsenal return home, where we have been dominant.

27 November 2017

Herbert Chapman: Huddersfield Legend.

Huddersfield, newly promoted to English soccer's top-flight, struggle, bravely but barely grasping at anything to stay up. Bigger clubs with more resources can bully them. Enter a young, new manager with fresh ideas about fitness, about positive, flowing football, about tactics and flexibility. He energizes the squad and propels them towards to the league title. I'm not talking about David Wagner, however. I'm summarising the exploits of one Herbert Chapman before he became the Arsenal legend that we know and love. In West Yorkshire, Chapman might be even more respected and beloved among the Terriers faithful than he is among Gooners.

Ramsey, Sterling, and the Art of the Dive...

Arjen Robben. Luis Suárez. Didier Drogba. All gifted in their own ways, but especially when it comes to simulation. Few if any could pantomime what it must feel like to get shot by a sniper and what it looks like to flop around like an electrocuted fish in the hull of a dory. It's a pity that such thespian theatrics are not rewarded by the Academy Awards. It's more of a pity that those antics are so frequently rewarded by the referees. With that in mind, we have two case studies: the penalty that Aaron Ramsey earned against Burnley, and the the penalty that Raheem Sterling earned against Huddersfield. 'Twixt the two, can we split any hairs?

26 November 2017

Burnley 0-1 Arsenal—Vote for Player Ratings/MOTM!

Wave after wave of the Arsenal attack crashed up against Burnley's defense but looked like we'd never break through. The hosts had a number of chances in the first half but seemed to settle on defending with tenacity in the second as Arsenal probed and pressed for a goal. It was always going to be tough to score here; Burnley have only conceded two goals in six matches. It seemed like we'd squander a chance to gain ground on Tottenham, Liverpool, and Chelsea, who all drew on Saturday. Then, in stoppage time, Tachowski brought Ramsey down in the box and Lee Mason pointed to the spot. Alexis made no mistake, and that's 0-1 to the Arsenal. Let's get down to the poll!