Maybe the Champions League DID affect Arsenal

Arsene Wenger suggested that Arsenal were jaded against Aston Villa on Saturday, after the North London derby against Tottenham and a crucial Champions league game against Montpellier. Many Arsenal fans may have seen that as just an excuse and there have been angry reactions to the draw, with lots of blame levelled at the French manager, but if you look around Europe, there is some evidence to back up Wenger’s claim.

Juventus had a vital game against Chelsea in midweek, and were lacklustre in defeat to AC Milan yesterday. Milan had a game in midweek but it was not crucial and so they did not put so much into it. Chelsea also looked tired yesterday as they drew with Manchester City. Mancini claimed that his team had not taken the opportunity presented to them, but they also had a crucial game against Real Madrid in midweek.

Jose Mourinho knew how important it was to avoid defeat against City and his team worked hard to achieve that. Madrid were beaten on Saturday by Real Betis, who had not played in midweek but were thrashed 5-1 by local rivals Seville the previous week. Celtic also lost in the SPL after their hard fought game with Benfica.

There are teams who played in Europe and then won this weekend, but the teams who had vital games, and have depleted squads through injury suffered more than most. I, for one, would rather have beaten Spurs and Montpellier than Aston Villa. I guess that Wenger thought we might have enought beat Paul Lambert’s side anyway, but they played well and conditions did not help. If we beat Everton on Wednesday, we will be back on track.

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38 thoughts on “Maybe the Champions League DID affect Arsenal

  1. HONEY BADGER

    just maybe if arsenal bought some players with the cash they got in the bank like :
    hunterlar
    wayams
    baines
    we would have the depth to win games like villa etc …

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  2. uriel

    i dont support this article think many things that is written in it is wrong and just a person with a wenger vendetta,yes he is arsenal worst player that is arsene wenger,but to say gervinho is poor i disagree totally,your ungrateful to say that gervinho has been poor this season,you all need to learn the game and stop from just been some educated football fools

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  3. Jego

    Yes , there IS a problem with accumulated fatigue. Too many injuries – another problem, we need a squad depth, and I don’t mean Santos, Djourou, Chamakh – type of a depth, we need to sell deadwood and buy 3-4 quality players LB, CDM, CF .

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  4. Gunnerineverylife

    Wenger was the one who created the problem,everyone could see that our squad lacked depth but didnt he tell that he is satisfied with the squad?

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  5. mukund

    Yes it can be champions league game did affect game against aston villa to some extent, but the other teams rotate squad which we cannot as we dont have any strong squad on the bench. Big teams win football games even when they play bad, thats how things are in primere legue this season. So we can guess were we stand.

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  6. Gunner

    It probably did coz look at city Chelsea they drew as well. But we need to stop doing the and beat teams like villa. A few years ago Everton we would of won easy nd now wer kinda worried we mite lose, c’mon you gunners.

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  7. Jego

    Apparently the board gave Arsene Wenger £40 mln to spend during the winter transfer window, but they also told him that we need selling deadwood first. Huntelaar, Capoue and Luke Shaw?

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  8. DocBrody

    Take away Walcott and Wilshire, then add in a down pour of rain and you get a game like what we saw on Saturday.

    Looking forward to having some options other than Ramsey when Rosicky comes back. Dare we even hope for a Diaby return?

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  9. leo

    @gunnerineverylife yeah the squad lacks depth the first thing wenger needs 2 do is get the diaby’s/chammakh/squallaci/bendtner/denislon/fabianski/andre santos/djorou out of the club & sign huntelaar/llorente(arsenal are in talks with bilbao & his agent) + fellaini is also a target 18m + a player then lewis holtby 4 arshavin & a lb

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  10. leo

    WE NEED 2 SIGN ESTABLISHED PLAYERS ACC TO MEDIA WE HAVE 40M TO SPEND IN JAN (THEY SAY THAT EVERY YEAR)

    NO MORE KOREAN MULLER I WANT THE REAL THOMAS MULLER TO JOIN ARSENAL

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  11. S.H

    It’s not the champions league or our schedule. It’s squad depth. Simple as that, no ifs or buts!

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  12. Gunnerineverylife

    @leo holtby for Arshavin would be a good deal,what scares me about us selling Arshavin to another epl club is that he may come back to haunt us,we know how well he plays in the playmaker role,fellaini is not the classic DM we need,he is not so good at the back thats why Moyes pushed him forward,I think we need a no nonsense DM who can cover the defence well even when our box to box mf and cam get too forward

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  13. Jego

    Sell: Denilson, Bendtner, Squillaci, Santos, Djourou, Chamakh, Park, Arshavin (coz Wenger simply won’t play him), Eastmond, Henderson, Watt. So that’s cutting wage bill by £500 K A week !!! And £40 mln generated from sales.
    Think about, this could make room for new 3-4 quality players

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  14. leo

    @Gunnerineverylife yeah dude heard we could offer him + chammakh & 18m for fellaini but if it is true then then it is worth it zenit have offered 3m for arshavin with reading/fulham/everton also interested only problem is his wage demand he is currently on 85-90 per week

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  15. S.H

    Where’s Kemp? Obviously he has, as expected shied away from a live debate. He can’t even use his real name to post comments here. When was the last time anyone saw Adam Kemp reply using his name in the comments section? I’ve never seen it. I wonder why? So Kemp, obviously you’re reading this, reveal yourself. If you don’t have the courage to support your team when they’re down, then at least show some courage and belief in what you write. Afraid that I will destroy you? Of course you are!

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  16. Salvage

    The fact that a manager(who claims to be top dog), at the beginning of a season ,sets himself a target of finishing fourth, just exposes it all and shows why we are playing the way we are. I mean, who does that? Who goes to war hoping to be beaten at war? Who amongst you sends his child to school advising him/her to strive to come 4th or 5th?
    Its not magic.. The body language from Wenger filters down to the players. Dont expect to see them tearing down defences with all their might.. After all, they are not gunning for the trophy or to be number 1. Just a little effort to stay within sight is just enough for them.And stop all the excuses. Everyone was aware of the fixtures and we are not the only ones playing frequent matches.
    Some keep blaminig the board but will never put the blame on the person at fault. The board dont make the totally clueless substitutions that Wenger does. Are you Wengerites saying that If Wenger insisted that VP would never be sold to Manu or he would quit, that the board would still sell him? Are you saying that if he insisted that he need more players in key positions, that they wont let him buy? This same board have always come out to tell us that there is money to be spent. Its in Wenger’s hands to demand for it. But he likes the status quo. He loves the level at which we are. In this situation, he can always hide behind the excuse(an excuse his worshippers always put forth) that we dont have enough quality to challenge because we dont spend. This is someone who knows he is lagging behind tactically and realises that if he spends and still dont win anything, he would then be totally exposed and there would be no hiding place anymore.Also the Wenger worshippers are not fair to this club. Wenger did not build the Emirates with his money. When they say things like “he built our stadium”, I marvel at the Idiocy. The money came from the fans, people. Another area where the Wenger worshippers are not fair to the club is in calculating our past successes. George Graham won 6 trophies(excluding the community shield) and including The Uefa cup in the space of 9 years in Charge. Wenger won 7 trophies(excluding the community shield) and he is here 15 years and counting. So comparatively, who did better?

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  17. Me-Basil

    The reason why we have not won anything in the past 7 years is because our bench was never as good as the other teams.

    We have a great first team, and have had world class players (The worlds best) in our first team. However, our bench players are on a different class. Usually a notch or two below.

    Unlike Man UTD, who take off RVP and put Chichorito/Ronney or Man City who take off Desko and put Tevez, this has made the difference for Arsenal between 3rd and 1st.

    We need class players to compete with our players on the bench, and only then will our squad be deep enough to compete.

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  18. S.H

    @uriel

    Admin’s a Wenger hater. The articles tend to be quite bias when things don’t go well. It’s a means of admin venting his frustrations as well. Kemp and Admin share the same opinions. Sometimes, I think they’re one of the same. And the name Bob just popped out of nowhere after Kemp stopped writing months ago. Something smells fishy. Just pseudonym after pseudonym to alleviate the pressure fans are applying to these articles! It’s a defeatist action, a desperate one!

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  19. arsenal4ever

    the best way to fail is to use excuses.

    mr wenger you are using too many excuses.

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  20. GoonerF

    We need more quality strength and depth in the squad, I am not calling for players from the weekend to be dropped I’m just saying that we need someone who can give Cazorla, Giroud and Arteta a rest or even a quality left winger and Podolski can cover Giroud , you know switch it up…

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  21. WEMO

    This is why you need to rotate the squad. And to rotate a squad you need to have a big enough squad, which we never seem to have lately. Just count the number of strikers we had in the squad at villa. That’s right. ONE.

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  22. Podolski's Hair

    Question: How many of you have tried to play 2 full games 4 days?

    Rotation is important, but we are simply thin. You guys think Eisfeld or Gnabry would have done any better away from home against BPL talent?

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  23. Arunavameister

    @S.H
    completely agree with u man…I have never seen him take part in these debates..all he does is wait for us to lose so that he can slate Wenger in his next article

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  24. bc

    sell this team and bench, then bring in half a dozen players that will give us more than all this lot put together

    fabianski
    eastmond djourou squillaci santos
    rosicky diaby denilson arshavin
    bendtner chamakh

    shea, boateng, henderson, galindo, park, watt, wellington

    honestly if that 18 left tomorrow would we really miss them? 13 of them havent played a single match for us this season and the other 5 (djourou, santos, diaby, arshavin chamakh) have started just 16 matches between them.

    lets clear the decks and use that £600k a week in saved wages to bring in 6 players on £100k a week that really can make a difference

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  25. Nchem

    Arsenal, a team that can lose to anyteam at anytime at any venue irrespective off form ……..it’s about time some changes be made at this my *fuqin* club

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  26. true goon

    good point @gooner.The players probably were tired but thats because Wenger keeps playing the same team,because the rest of the bench is so weak,and the weakness of the squad is the fault of the manager and the board

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  27. dboy

    Lack of depth who’s fault is it really? Who signed up all the deadwood and under performers?
    Who cannot motivate them? A person who never admits his wrong is like someone addicted to drugs, he believes he’s ok even if he’s destroying himself.

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  28. Thebiggestgooner

    What a load of crap!
    We rested our best players, that’s why we never picked up the points.
    I have always believed in taking one game at a time, therefore wilshere, Sagna and vermalen should have started. If they could not make the everton game then so be it. What good is picking up points at Goodison when we drop points at villa. I just don’t understand the logic.
    Also what’s going on with podolski, great start to season and some world class finishing but just does not look as effective as he should in that wide left position.
    Lack of pace is a clear issue right now
    Still love wenger though
    Still hate Ramsey

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  29. Hafiz Rahman

    Arsenal has the depth but Wenger is not fielding them…i wonder why….lack of experience???

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  30. CanadaGooner

    Turned on the local sports channel here in Vancouver and watched the last part of the QPR/ Man U game before my Arsenal was slated to come on.

    It put the Gunners inconsistencies into full view when compared to United who really, on the day, didn’t have that much of a stronger team than Arsenal.

    What they have is a ruthless determination in attack and belief they can win any game.

    Arsenal lacks that certain killer instinct and grit when going forward. They showed it in the final five minutes but really should have had it throughout the match.
    Manchester also played in the rain and Champions League mid week so there are no excuses.

    Hope they can turn up the intensity with Everton.

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  31. S.H

    @Arunavameister

    Yeah mate, like I said Kemp never replies using his name. He likes to hide behind a false name to avoid getting slammed. I’ve written a few articles and never shy away from a debate. If someone disagrees, fair enough, everyone is entitled to an opinion, but those opinions tend to change once the facts are revealed. Kemp is just a ranter, probably a figment of admin’s imagination. I don’t know. I suspect that they are one of the same. I was kind of surprised that admin didn’t slot a comment under any of my posts to defend himself like he usually does. More the reason to believe that I am right. I bet now that admin has read this, he will include a comment below. Either way which ever way he chooses – he now knows that people aren’t so naive.

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  32. Gundam

    i bet if we rested cazorla we would have won 2 nil with arshavin out there… no doubt.. he would have penetrated them like he would a …

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  33. hamid

    Great article. It makes sense. Guess Wenger thought it’s better to lose two points to a team that isn’t a rival for the CL spot, then to lose three points to a team that is a CL contender. Everton away is a must win! And I believe it will be a win. They don’t have their best player on the pitch, and we are overall fit, plus Gibbs is back.
    It would be sooo nice if Wenger makes substitutes in the 60th minute at least and it would be nice to see Coquelin coming in for Arteta. And no Ramsey this time, pleaaaase. And Arshavin should come in for Cazorla, not Podolski.

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  34. sku

    A lot of the fans always suggest that we sell a player here and buy another there. I dont think it is easy to sell some of the players we want to see sold and we might have to manage with them around and classify them as Losses as in any business. To sell, first there has to be a willing buyer and a willing seller and the Right Price and Wages. I have raised this question before a lot of the fans are asking for a 4-4-2 formation. I agree this will suit the two front men Giroud and Podolski but I doubt if our midfield can handle this formation. I am thinking about the two central midfielders who will have to cover a lot of the ground in this system and I dont see who would fit in that. When we BEAT 5pur2 they had two strong players in Sandro and Huddlestone in there (4-4-2) and I dont think we can go like for like with those. That is why Wenger won’t do it and I agree for once with the coaching staff (Wenger). What do you think guys? I would like Admin to do an article on this as everyone is talking 4-4-2.

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