Archive for the ‘Van Persie’ Category

Robin Van Persie

At the moment it is 80 per cent no and 20 per cent yes. But he has a scan this afternoon and he is better today than he was last night. That is positive for a muscle problem. But we’ll know much more about it on Friday morning


We have Adebayor who has a little ankle problem. We’ll see how he is tomorrow. I hope he’ll be OK. But the time is so short between the games it is very difficult to make a decision the morning after a game


Sagna is making good progress. Manchester United is the earliest for him. We are trying everything we can to get him back for that game. But we’ll know more when he starts to run outside and he has not begun that.


He will not be back for the Liverpool games

So, we have Robin who will be out, Adebayor who will most probably start, Sagna still out.
Back to square one, folks.

Theo to start on the right for me, with Bendtner and Ade up front.
Either that or Theo on the left, Hleb playing supporting striker.


I thought that I would put my two cents in seeing that there is so much official news and views coming out in the past few days.  This match will be shown at 1.15 am here. First up, Wenger makes the same comments that he had been dispensing for a while.

1) We have a large squad and even top class players have to compete for their places. Diarra too.

2) Beckham will train with the team in January – It ‘s nothing really. Just a player looking for some peers to train with. The youngsters might benefit from his technique for crosses

3) We will not buy anyone in January – he cheekily adds a remote probability of doing otherwise

Moving on to real match preview stuff. Gallas is fit and ready for the match although Walcott, Robin and Eboue won’t be traveling with the squad. Walcott is rested after his recovery from flu. Eboue because he has played a lot of games. Robin still suffers from a “little” muscular problem. I wonder how little that is because he has already missed the Spurs and Pompey ones and will also not be in the Everton and West Ham matches. Will he make it/risked for the Burnley away game in the FA Cup? I think even Arsene doesn’t know the answer to this one.

One thing though, with Eboue and Walcott not playing, would we revert to a 4-4-2? The most obvious right midfield candidate now is Hleb and that would release the forwards position to either Dudu or Bendtner. That is what I would like to see though. In truth though, I believe Dudu or Diaby will be in the left while Rosicky takes up the right. I really hope Arsene surprises us on this one.

Oh, and Arsene has given the green light for Jens to go off and seek a place in Germany’s Euro 2008 team elsewhere.

Arsenal v AC Milan

Well, we got it. A big name. Flamini v Gattuso. Robin v Kaka. Pirlo v Cesc. It’s going to be a tasty one.

The fixtures are already out:

1st leg
Arsenal v AC Milan
Wednesday 20th February 2008
Kick Off 7.45 (UK time)
At Emirates Stadium

2nd leg
AC Milan v Arsenal
Tuesday 4th March 2008
Kick Off 7.45 (UK time)
At San Siro Stadium

This was the rest of the draw (1st leg home team named first)

Celtic v Barcelona
Lyon v Manchester United
Schalke v Porto
Liverpool v Inter Milan
Roma v Real Madrid
Olympiakos v Chelsea
Fenerbahce v Sevilla

Diaby (8), Bendtner (42) 


Match Gunner: Robin Van Persie-Still brilliant after the long lay-Off. (special mention to Theo)


We came into this match needing to win and Sevilla to lose to Sparta in order to top the group. Wenger had a touchline ban for this match due to the altercation in the Sevilla game.
Before the game, Wenger hinted on his team for this match by announcing that Arsenal is not afraid of “big” teams. Lehmann got his start and Wenger suggested that Jens would be off sooner than later.

Surprisingly, Van Persie, after that bone crunching injury sustained during international duty, was named on the starting line up. Diaby was another surprising inclusion after his injury. Everyone’s favourite, Song was also named in the starting 11.

This is how we started

ST-Van Persie

We were expected to stroll to a victory here and for once in recent games, the expectations were realized, although the scoreline failed to reflect that.

2nd minute and a good chance arrived when Robin’s pass found Theo on the right and he pulled his shot just wide. Minutes later, his ran past a few defenders but skied his shot.8th minute and the goal arrived. Robin started the move with a smart turn and found Sagna. Sagna’s cross was brought down by Diaby under immense pressure . His first touch took a lucky bounce off the pitch forward and his second touch found the top corner of the net. 1-0 and we were looking nice and comfortable with a second Diaby goal only denied by a nice save by the Steaua keeper.

We were looking threatening and the outstanding players were Theo and Robin. Theo’s pace on the right wing was causing problems and Robin’s excellent technique and turns were a joy to behold. It didn’t seem like his first game back. He was directly involved in the second. An exquisite goal. He made a bewildering turn that left the defense for dead and angled a pass to Bendtner on the right. Bendtner had all to do then but took his goal like a seasoned pro. He went pass the closing defender and slide in the shot pass the onrushing keeper. 2-0 up.


Second half came and there were a few chances here and there.
Suddenly Steaua were looking dangerous and it was our turn to do some defending
Robin was brought and Dudu in. Steaua made a few changes of their own and both their subs were involved in their goal. A looping header which left Jens with no chance.

Diarra and Eboue were brought in for Diaby and Sagna. Theo, Bendtner and Dudu had a few chances between them but failed to convert and the game finished 2-1. Nice. The 3-0 win from Sevilla meant that we finish second in Group H and will meet another group’s winner in the knock out phase. I say, bring them on. That is what Champions League is all about. Champions against Champions.

Moving on to the match against Chelsea. Wenger had some thoughts on the players available paricularly Hleb,Flamini and Cesc. I would suspect Flamini and Hleb/Cesc to be involved.

Downing(4, pen), Tuncay(74)


Match Gunner: Arsene Wenger?

Fourth away game on the trot after Sevilla, Villa and Newcastle and we lost our first Premier League game of the season. All thoughts were on us getting the three points againt a mediocre Boro side who was in relegation zone. Funny how it turned out. We crashed to a resounding defeat after maintaining a 15 match lose-less streak in the Premiership.

Did not watch the game but by the sounds of it, we were not at the races at all. Boro played well and won. We started with Diarra and Gilberto in midfield. Eduardo started as well. It seemed like Dudu had a dud and was quickly replaced by Bendtner at half time. You have to wonder why Arsene insists on putting him on the wing when the Crozillian is obviously very good as a finisher as is evident in his contributions to the Croatian national side. Wenger threw Walcott and Denilson for Diarra and Eboue to add extra impetus to the side but it was ultimately unsuccesful. Again we were outplayed and rarely had a shot on goal. Very untypical.


We lost the game because we deserved to lose it. Middlesbrough were sharper in the fight. They were a team who lacked confidence and we missed something at the start of the game because we gave them too much room and that caused the penalty. After that it was down to us

Boro had an early penalty when Kolo brought down former boy Aliadiere.


Downing completed the formality


Tuncay finished up an Almunia block from O’Neill to make it 2-0

Tomas provided a consolation goal for us in the final minute and that’s about the gist of it.


We were well beaten and we can hope that the boys will bounce back stronger and better after this. First up is our last group Champions League match against Steau Bucharest. I would expect the team to stay the same as Wenger has dismissed individuality and saying our form was due to the team as a whole as:

I don’t like to speak about the players who are not here, I always have confidence in the players who play. When you go into a season you know you will miss some players at some stage. 

Quite right. Losing players to injury is not an excuse. Long term injuries have hit all the top teams. Man Utd is missing Scholes. Chelsea is missing Drogba. Liverpool have been without Agger and Alonso.

Particularly looking at how we can bounce back as the next Premierdhip match is against Chelsea match as Fab and Hleb might miss that one too. Van Persie and Flamini have a good chance of making it though with Robin probably starting on the bench due to the lack of fitness.

Eduardo (8, 50) Denilson (69)
Match Gunner: Eduardo Da Silva

The youngsters continue from where the senior players left off. A good win especially since our last match against them in Bramall Lane ended in a ugly 1-0 loss

Early on in the match and Dudu scored a beautiful drive from the edge of the box after a nice angled pass from Bendtner. This goal is the pick of the lot.

His second goal came a few minutes after halftime when a nice pass from Kieran Gibbs found him in the clear. Sheffield United defense was particularly shocking here. Dudu just composed himself and slid it past the keeper

In the 65th minute, Walcott got a great chance to add to his season tally when a mistake by the opposing team allowed him to round the keeper but his effort hit the post. To be fair, it was a narrow angle.

A few minutes later, Denilson was wide open and strode forward from midfield with no resistance and took his chance with a try that clipped the back of the big lump, Chris Morgan and went in.

A goal line clearance from Gilberto ensured a clean sheet for Fabianski.

This is how we lined up against Sheffield Utd

GK: Lukasz Fabianski
RB: Lassana Diarra
LB: Kieran Gibbs
CD: Justin Hoyte
CD: Alex Song
RM: Theo Walcott
LM: Abou Diaby
CM: Denilson
CM: Gilberto
F: Eduardo
F: Nicklas Bendtner

with Nacer Barazite, Gavin Hoyte, Vito Mannone, Fran Merida, Henri Lansbury as the subs (No love for Lehmann then)

With no surprises in the games last night, West Ham, Liverpool, Chelsea, Blackburn, Man City, Everton and Spurs through too. Tough night for Chelsea though, as they struggled to a 4-3 win over Leicester. Lampard grabbing a hattrick there.

Again, fine win for the youngsters with all the starting 11 at Anfield all rested with an eye on the MU clash coming up in 3 days. The big win was deserved as we played wonderful flowing football with crisp passing and nice movement. We Arsenal fans are a spoilt lot and judging from the performance of the youngsters, we can be assured of many more years of witnessing the same under Wenger.

What a relief it is to have finally gotten past the international week and onto real club football.The big news from the internationals has to be Van Persie’s knee injury for Holland.

We will be without our classy striker for around a month. That would mean that he will miss the big clashes with Liverpool and Man Utd. What a time to get injured. No fret, we still have our big game striker Adebayor. Togo missing out on African Nations Cup will mean that he will not be missing from the squad come January. The same cannot be said for Toure and Eboue though. If Ivory Coast goes all the way to the finals, they will be missing for up to six weeks.

However, Gallas is expected to be back. So is injury prone midfielder, Rosicky. You would have to see whether Le Boss takes up the Czech National Team doctor’s advice though and not rush him back into action.

Van Persie’s absence would see the chance for either Eduardo and to a lesser extent; Bendtner to shine.

Eduardo’s still banging them in for Croatia and Bendtner has been doing a lot of talking about his chances in Arsenal. Walcott also has a chance as Wenger is now prepared to use him as a striker.

In between the posts, Arsene has settled the debate by announcing that Almunia will be continuing his run in the side.

Moving on to our weekend rivals, Bolton . They are in a bad spot. Languishing in 19th position with just 5 points from 9 games. Sammy Lee has just left Bolton by “mutual consent” and Archie Knox is now the caretaker manager. Easy pickings?? I have no doubt that we will be all over them like flies to a durian. But with Anelka aka Le Sulk in their wings, we have to be wary of their counterattack and long balls.

Going on to club matters, Arsenal had it’s AGM. Two key points from the meeting.

  1. Arsenal shares are in lock down until 2009. After that, until 2011 the shareholders can only sell their shares ONLY to current directors. Head on to arseblog for details.
  2. Arsene has been honoured by the commission of a bronze bust to be displayed in the Ashburton Grove. It will go well with the bust of Herbert Chapman