Daily Archives: February 3, 2012

Still Without a Premier League Win in 2012: Thoughts From Some Gooners

I usually give a detailed match report a day after every game but Wednesday’s game against Bolton wasn’t worth the effort. To be frank, I missed a very large chunk of the match (for some reasons I won’t explain in this post) but my first view of the match was to see Aaron Ramsey chip the ball to his forefather that was on the left side of the pitch while his teammates were in front of him.

I can remember seeing the Ox withdrawn for Thierry Henry but the boo boys kept their mouths shut this time. I’m pretty sure a missile would have been thrown into the pitch if Andrey Arshavin’s number came up. I can vividly remember that moment of outstanding quality from Robin van Persie but his chipped effort clipped the bar as the goalie watched haplessly.

At the end of the referee’s whistle, Arsenal had more or less assured their long-suffering fans that Europa League football would be the spectacle of next season. Many Gooners used social networking applications like Facebook, Twitter, BlackBerry Messenger and the rest of the lot to air their frustrations but I’m going to throw some light to the comments written by a specific set of Gooners.

These Gooners are the members of the Arsenal group I created on my BlackBerry Messenger called Team Goonerdaily. All sorts of crazy characters are in this group but we all share the same passion for the club we support. Bear in mind that these comments represent what many Gooners worldwide would’ve written.

Capt. D Sun said,

“When a man is contented with the way he is, he thinks he has done enough to be celebrated. He no longer competes with anybody and it’s fair to say that he has lost his purpose.”

You don’t need a soothsayer to tell you who Capt. D Sun was writing about. Arsenal’s wily old stubborn manager is undoubtedly the most successful manager in the club’s history by virtue of the amount of silverware he has won but the trophy well has truly dried up in the past six seasons.

Arsene Wenger is more or less assured of the “job for life” and he has been managing Arsenal on the back of the knowledge that he’ll never be on his toes.  It’s obvious that so many things aren’t working well at the club but he consistently gives deaf ears to pleas from the fans and players alike.

For starters, it’s high time Arsenal reverts back to the 4-4-2 formation that almost won the league in the 2007/08 campaign. Van Persie is a forward that’s also adept as a supporting striker, so I strongly feel that Wenger should hand starts to the likes of Thierry Henry, Park Chu-Young or Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the center forward position.

I sure don’t want to see Theo Walcott play there though. I thought his miss against QPR was woeful but he took out time to give the fans a sequel against Bolton. Playing with two strikers would also mean that Aaron Ramsey will get a warm cozy spot on the bench because the midfield can clearly survive with just Mikel Arteta and Alex Song.

Martyn, or @mayorbaze as his Twitter folks know him said,

“I pity Marouane Chamakh. I have this feeling that he just needs a coach who’ll play to his strengths.“The funny thing is that he still has some good touches. I know he’ll be regretting not moving to Lyon.” 

On Arsenal’s new signing,

“I’ve not seen Thomas Eisfeld play, but I don’t want to think that he won’t be better than Aaron Ramsey. That will be suicide.”

Starting with Chamakh, every Gooner pities the chap. He is a mere shadow of the player that scored 10 goals in his first 21 games for Arsenal. There’s no denying that van Persie’s scintillating form has seen Chamakh relegated to the bench but the Moroccan has being very atrocious in his recent games for the club.

He’s renowned for being a “head master” but he hasn’t really gotten that kind of service in Arsenal. It would do the club and the player some good if they part ways this summer. Arsenal is a club renowned for profit making; a quid or two from a player that cost nothing is certainly good business in my books.

Thomas Eisfeld made his first Arsenal appearance in a Reserves fixture against Swansea Reserves. He was hugely impressive and he pulled the strings in midfield. It will be unfair to juxtapose between Ramsey and Eisfeld at this point in time.

Finally, Gooner Daily Pioneer Obinna Edeh or @Obitwyce cheered us all with this comment,

“Harmonia Concordia Victoria Crescit. I’m folding my hands and waiting for May. #InOtherNews, we have a fantastic female team.”

Tomasz added,

 “Rachel Yankee and Faye White should replace Andrey Arshavin and Theo Walcott”

I don’t watch the Arsenal Ladies but I know that they have a knack for winning quadruples. Their trophy haul in recent years have been very amazing and it’s shameful to know how things are going on the “other side.”

As for Rachel Yankee and Faye White, I have a hunch that they would have buried those one on one opportunities against QPR Ladies or Bolton Ladies.

There were so many more but I’ll halt here. Feel free to share yours.


5 Reasons Why Robin van Persie Shouldn’t be Begrudged if he Leaves Arsenal

In recent times, the sound of Robin van Persie’s name sends chills down the spines of defenders because of his exploits on the pitch. 2011 was certainly a year to remember for the Dutch forward as he smashed many records to bits and created others on the go.

In 2011, Robin van Persie’s amazing goal scoring form in the Premier League started with a deflected free kick in St. Andrews when Arsenal thrashed Birmingham City in their own turf.

A brace followed against West Ham before a headed goal from a Nicklas Bendtner cross when Arsenal defeated Leeds United in a FA Cup replay. His first hattrick in Arsenal colors against Wigan was followed up a brace in that 4-4 epic outing at St. James Park…or Sports Direct Arena as it has been recently called.

Wolves were on the end of another brace before Arsenal’s goal of 2011 was scored when Barcelona visited the Emirates. He scored Birmingham City in the Carling Cup final and the goals dried up a bit before his scrappy finish in a game that was marred by Manuel Almunia’s stupidity (West Brom).

In April, he smashed one past Blackpool before scoring a penalty in the 97th minute against Liverpool. He saved one for the North London derby before ending the month with a well executed finish against Bolton following a neat one-two with Cesc Fabregas.

After netting three more times in May against Stoke, Aston Villa and Fulham, van Persie has picked up where he left off this season with 17 more goals to name to end the year with 35 League goals; One goal above Thierry Henry (34) and a goal behind Alan Shearer (36).

In the wake of Arsenal’s disastrous showing in the Premier League, The Week reports that van Persie wants to join Cesc Fabregas in Barcelona. The facts that he’ll have a year left in his deal and Arsenal being a “selling” club will bolster his chances of seeking green pastures elsewhere.

Should Robin van Persie decide to leave Arsenal for FC Barcelona, the Gunners shouldn’t begrudge him. Here are five reasons why:

Arsenal’s Lack of Transfer Activity in General

Arsenal is managed by one of the most shrewdest and money-conscious managers in world football and this has been reflected in the club’s lack of transfer activity. Despite the fact that the club is certainly lacking in quality and numbers in some areas of pitch, the manager folded his arms and watched the month of January pass by.

The fans craved for quality signings this winter transfer window. Wenger signed an old legend on loan and bought a 19-year old midfielder on deadline day.


Like every Arsenal fan and player alike, Van Persie hoped to see quality signings but he had to make do with what his manager had to offer.

No disrespect to King Thierry Henry, but it wasn’t enough.

Failure to Replace Key Members of the Squad

When van Persie joined Arsenal in 2005, he had the likes of Thierry Henry leading the line while there were so many other great players in every section of the pitch. The generation of the “Invincibles” were sold out to other teams or let go thereby causing the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Samir Nasri, Andrey Arshavin and Theo Walcott to become the key figureheads of the club.

Wenger sold Arsenal’s creative juggernauts in the form of Fabregas and Nasri and replaced them with lightweight Mikel Arteta and Yossi Benayoun. Arteta urged the fans not to compare him with the departed Fabregas and he has stamped his authority on the pitch flourishing in the box to box role.

This left the burden of creativity on the shoulders of Aaron Ramsey, Tomas Rosicky and Yossi Benayoun and they haven’t been up to the challenge this season.

Present Deadwood Playing for the Club

In May 2008, Zenit St. Petersburg played Glasgow Rangers in the final of the UEFA Cup. Rangers run to the final saw them record many goalless draws that were settled with penalties but a little Russian delivered two through passes that cut their defense open like hot knife through butter.

Move a bit forward to the European Championships that took place in Switzerland and Austria in the summer of 2008.

The little Russian was suspended from some matches in the group stage but singlehandedly destroyed tournament favorites Holland in the quarter finals before losing to the eventual winners Spain in the semis.

Finally, move forward to February 2nd, 2009.

After a very long transfer saga that was almost thwarted with issues concerning money, this little Russian inherited the jersey left by Sol Campbell to wow the Arsenal faithful with breathtaking performances with the pick of the bunch being his amazing four-goal haul when Arsenal visited Anfield.

Return back to reality and see the same Andrey Arshavin that was regarded well above Robin van Persie and Samir Nasri as one of Arsenal’s world class players after Cesc Fabregas.

He has become a very peripheral figure in matches and he can be a pain to watch at times and this was epitomized in the 2-1 loss to Manchester United where the Russian was booed for coming in for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

There are still other deadwood like Sebastien Squillaci, Manuel Almunia as well as loanees such as Nicklas Bendtner, Carlos Vela and Denilson.

Heavy Burden of Goal Scoring

In all my years as an Arsenal fan, I’ve never seen the club so dependent on a player to come up with all the goods week-in week-out. In the days of the Invincibles, Thierry Henry was the main man but Arsenal could still rely on Dennis Bergkamp, Robert Pires, Freddie Ljungberg, Patrick Vieira amongst other to deliver.

Van Persie is closing in on 30 goals and his closest rival for the Arsenal Golden Boot is Theo Walcott with a six goals. The fact that Wenger shows lack of faith in Marouane Chamakh and Park Chu-Young only means that van Persie must play provided he’s fit.

Which is detrimental to his health in the long run.

A Player of his Talent Deserves Better

If you take a good and honest look at Arsenal Football Club, you can count a handful of players that can challenge for a first team place in the biggest teams in world football. Robin van Persie is undoubtedly one of the best forwards in world football so he deserves to play for a club where he’s be scoring goals and enjoying his football.

In Arsenal, he’s scoring a boatload of goals but is he enjoying life at the club?

What else would make him stall imminent contract talks with the club.

With the way Arsenal is performing, it would take some convincing to keep Robin van Persie.

Should he decide to leave for Barcelona, I won’t begrudge him.

I hope you won’t.


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