Arsenal coast to victory despite wholesale changes

It was an easy afternoon for Arsenal this afternoon as we coasted to an easy 2-0 victory against Newcastle.

Mikel Arteta opted to ring the changes ahead of the Europa League clash come Thursday, making eight changes to the starting line-up, but that didn’t stop us starting brightly.

Mo Elneny’s effort saw us break the deadlock early, and it paved the way for a comfortable afternoon. It was Aubameyang who had the first chance to strike on goal however, but mis limited contact saw the ball arrive bouncing towards the Egyptian, who half-volleyed his effort into the left-half side of the goal.

We continued to have the upper-hand throughout the first 45, and we should really have scored a second, but there was little reason to be alarmed regardless.

The second-half was all Arsenal again. Elneny and Ceballos were bossing the midfield and there were very little mistakes in possession, while the Spaniard’s eye for a forward pass was hard at work.

We did double our lead thanks to a fine team move, where we moved it around almost unchallenged, before Gabriel Martinelli was played in out wide, and he whipped his cross into the box for Aubameyang to tap home.

Bellerin had a chance to head home shortly afterwards, but he failed to get his effort on target, and the task was made easier after a silly challenge by Fabian Schar sees him get sent off.

All-in-all it was a relatively uneventful matchup where there was just the one side in it, but you won’t hear any complaints from me.

On to Thursday…

Tags Arsenal v Newcastle Newcastle


  1. My MOTM is Elneny for his long shot that ruined Bruce’s plan and the second best is Martinelli for his dribbles/ assist. Elneny the 5 M defensive midfielder has been showing Partey how to do long shots properly

    Ryan’s catches were also impressive, but let’s see how he would fare against Chelsea

    1. You beat me to it on the Elneny comment. Even Xhaka registered a couple of shots on target from outside the box. Partey should sort himself out fast and live up to his valuation. Elneny is a very reliable squad player to keep.

      Unfortunate for Luiz injury. Aside from all that, no complaints from me. We won comfortably as I expected we should prior to kick-off.

      1. Luiz was also great in stealing the ball from Newcastle’s forwards. I know Partey has never been a goalscoring midfielder, but he should’ve honed his long shot technique

        As a box-to-box midfielder, Partey might be better than Ramsey and Willock in dribbling through the middle of the field. But he is sometimes shocking in other aspects

        1. Partey scores goals more than Elneny. He scored five goals last for ATM and he was the leading scorer for the black stars of Ghana in their AFCON qualifiers.

          So what’s your point on his goal scoring GAI?

          1. Partey just scored 12 goals for Atletico in La Liga, despite playing for five years in Madrid

        2. Well he was not shocking at AM, he started of really well when he joined Arsenal, so it seems another established player is struggling under Arteta. How many more before we realise Arteta is the root cause for all the problem. Auba, Laca, Willian n now Partey.

          1. Except for Ozil and Sanchez, which recent established player shone at Arsenal? It’s been an issue since the days of Wenger.
            Gallas,Arshavin,Chamack came in on an amazing champions league streak, Gervinho, Laca, Mikhi. It’s a pre Arteta problem.

  2. Great win
    Such a shame about Luiz again ,might be the last time we see him play for us so gets MOTM ,brilliant passes all match and on a sixpence .
    Martinelli was also outstanding once again which begs the question why is he not a first choice starter .
    On to Thursday for the biggest game in years for us.

    1. I guess Arteta’s management style is based on the promises he made to the players at the beginning of the season

      The first choices of strikers for this season are definitely Aubameyang, Lacazette and Nketiah. Whereas LW priorities seemed to be Aubameyang, Willian and Pepe

      I think Arteta made his selection based on early promises and seniority. I believe Martinelli and Balogun will replace Nketiah or Lacazette next season, if Arteta is still at the Emirates

  3. I watched only the first half because I felt there was nothing in the game after we scored. Newcastle didn’t look like scoring and I wasn’t sure if we were scoring another goal. Anyways now we need to win the Europa match which ahs been my main concern.

  4. Best of the bunch:

    Martinelli, Gabriel, Elneny, Ryan

    Can we now demote Leno to second choice?

  5. Well done, Elneny and buzzing Auba’s back on the scoresheet! So good seeing him out there again 😊
    Why can’t we play the Barcodes every week?! 😂
    Up to 9th – I’ll have a nosebleed before long 😆

    1. Up to 9th 😂, not to ruin the day but those few words says a lot. To win the EL will really help to have something positive from this season.

  6. On a lighter note, Partey should ask Elneny how to shoot.

    Comfortable win..unfortunately, Martinelli won’t start on Thursday. I thought he was electrifying…

    1. All the goals Partey scores for ATM were oitside the box. Let’s give him time, he will start scoring from long ranges

      1. I personally compared Partey’s stats with Xhaka’s and guess who is better on long shot conversion ratio. Believe it or not it is Xhaka. So you should not really expect much from Partey’s long shot. Maybe he will score here and there, but most of the time he will be hitting the moon.

        1. Xhaka was great at scoring long shots until he came to Arsenal and was dissuaded by Wenger.

          1. I remember times at Arsenal where Xhaka was trying his luck far too often and was scoring far too little, which was pretty frustrating to watch. But I do belive you, as I’ve never watched Xhaka before Arsenal but I see his ability. He is fully capable of putting those shots on target and it looks to me that now he is shooting only when he is in really good position which makes his shots pretty dangerous most of the time.

    1. Depends on which Arsenal will turn up. They are capable of both in equal measures, thrashing or get thrashed.

    2. A 1-0 victory would send us through. Shockingly. Question is chances of keeping a clean sheet and scoring. Very low. So yeah, 2-3 goal margin i guess is the right question afterall haha.

    3. What we need is just 1-0 win.
      But we want a lot of goals in view of our defensive record.

  7. Didnt watch the game, but nice to see Mo get a goal. Good result ahead of a very important match. COYG!
    Ps- I am wondering why Willock was not played against us. Is it because we are the parent club?

  8. I’m starting to like Ryan. He is quite commanding and also makes decision on when to play out of the back. I hope to see him against a quality opponent soon.

  9. I thought Ryan was a revelation today, dominating his area and coming for balls, and catching them, in a way Leno doesn’t. Big shouts to Elneny, Martinelli and Luiz.

    1. Declan, agree 100% regarding Ryan… an excellent signing and I hope it becomes a permanent one.
      Elneny was excellent and yet he gets it in the neck from our fickle fans, because he isn’t a big name player.
      An excellent performance, well done to the team and also to Mikel Arteta, who got it right on the day and also rested some of the key players for Thursday night.

      1. Don’t encourage Declan Ken he blamed Leno for our first 2 goals on Thursday 😂
        Ryan had absolutely nothing to do all game .

        1. … yes had nothing to do because he’s a good commander of his back line, which Leno is not.
          That parry over the bar in the first half would have been fluffed into post by Leno.

          1. I don’t want to get into the debate about Leno versus Ryan – just happy that we have two decent keepers to cover each other – shame we didn’t think to do the same thing at left back though!!!

      2. I agree ken, based on Mat Ryan’s EPL and international record he is an excellent No. 2. He is also capable of keeping Leno on his toes.

  10. A comfortable win. It looked as though Newcastle had put their feet up as Fulham are very unlikely to catch them now.
    Hopefully Martinelli is ok for Thursday and poor Luiz 🙁.

    1. Lol. I kept thinking, “could it perhaps be Arteta sent that guy to take him out,” so that he’ll come to the press conference and tell us it is the reason he’s been protecting him and keeping him out of the team.

  11. Walk in the park this game was. Newcastle did all their work against other opposition and are staying up, so clearly had a day off. Just glad Auba is on the scoresheet, and Martinelli had a good game. Elneny played well too. Will need to see the back of him come summer though. Same with ceballos. Another not so great game from him. May have been a blessing for him not to be available mid-week.

      1. Probably ken because we dont use him enough because he is ok but not of the standard. We couldn’t even get takers for 10 mil for him last summer. It maybe the same next and we maybe will still an Arsenal player in the background.

        1. If anyone has managed a team (no matter in what sport /business) then they KNOW that one cannot succeed without having workhorses who are happy to be part of the team.

          That sums up Elneny – a great professional, who has never let the club down and/or complained.

          Worth his weight in gold for me… compare him to Ceballos or Guendouzi and then say he’s not good enough!!!

  12. Although he was not under a lot of pressure, Ryan was very impressive and his handling was first class.He is still a very good keeper who we should sign on a permanent basis.I also thought that Gabriel did well and showed more assurance and pace to keep Wilson quiet.I would play Gabriel instead of Mari against Villareal.

    1. I do agree that Ryan exudes far more confidence than the oft-perplexing Leno, but let’s be honest, Ryan has literally been tested twice since his arrival at the club…of course, his been there, done that demeanor is definitely infectious, but I can’t stop from feeling that he’s just too diminutive for a club looking to contend for things(had the same feeling with Ospina, even though I still felt he was a decent enough keeper)

      I can’t help but notice that many of the same individuals who are eagerly propping up the Aussie are the same people who weren’t convinced by Martinez…by comparison, based on the standards being used to evaluate Ryan, with a VERY limited sample size, Emi should be considered the greatest Keeper in our modern history

      I do agree, however, with your assessment regarding Gabs…he should be our definitive starting LCB moving forward…I would even stick to the pairing we finished the game with against Villareal, as I think Chambers is much better with the ball at his feet than Holding, likely due to his experience in the DM position while on loan at Fulham a few years back

      1. TRVL, please check Ryan’s proven record in top level football in Belgium, England and international football. He didn’t just start playing yesterday and your obsession with a few inches in height has not been shown to impact on his affectiveness as a goal keeper. He was a major factor in keeping Brighton up, and many fans argue he is still the better keeper.

        1. the average height of a Premier League goalkeeper is 1.9 meters (6 ft 3 in)…of course, there are exceptions to the rule in the footballing world, like Iker Casillas, Victor Valdes, and David Ospina, whom have carved out successful careers at “big” clubs, but they’re called EXCEPTIONS for a reason

          once again, I have nothing personally against Mr. Ryan, but my chief concern is what would give our club the greatest chance to succeed…as such, we simply can’t afford to rely on “exceptions to the rule”, instead we need to pursue a more tried and tested course of action, where the odds are squarely in our favour…at some point common sense needs to rule the day at this club, especially when it comes to our recruitment practices

          1. TRVL, just hire a basketball er if height is the primary criteria. Height is one thing but agility (not being leaden footed), speed, anticipation, tactical nous in reading and marshalling a defence (communication – note Ryan is multi linguil in English, French and Spanish), command of the area and top level experience are critical.
            Apparently Ryan has been underwhelming playing in the top leagues of England, Belgium and Spain plus the World Cup, because he is 1.84cm. He should just save everyone the trouble and retire from football.

          2. It’s quite obvious that you’re bias towards your fellow countrymen, as he lost his starting gig at both Valencia, where he only made 21 appearances, and Brighton…it appears that his best string of games occurred when he was at Brugge, playing in a substandard League with two predominant teams, one of which he was on

            in realistic terms he’s just a slightly above average Keeper who’s played well in patches but has never had a sniff for any “big” clubs, which continues to be the case, as we’re clearly not in that category presently…please keep in mind, I have no problem with him replacing the disaster that is Runnar for the remainder of the season, but I certainly wouldn’t want to sign him long-term…he’s not a viable starter for a team with higher aspirations, which could be a debatable issue here anyways, and he doesn’t make sense in light of Leno’s current contract, as we should be developing a younger Keeper as part of a logical succession plan, which has been another one of our failings since arriving at the Emirates

            agree to disagree is probably our best recourse

          3. TRVL, to be fair I have only claimed he is a good No. 2 and have not pushed for him to be No. 1 at Arsenal, if you read my posts.
            My difference of opinion with you is that you not believe Ryan is good enough to be back up keeper. Good luck finding someone better for a reasonable price, given the other deficient positions which should be rectified.

  13. Easy game, hopefully helpfull in more ways than one for Thursday night. Game time for players coming back and not too taxing for the players energy levels. Shame about Luiz because he could have been massive on Thursday but good game time for Auba.

  14. Good win, and we managed the game well. Nothing to write home about. The big match is Thursday and I hope we up the tempo times three. Good to see auba get on the score sheet, he need to carry that form into thursday. Would love to see Martinelli start thursday as he is more direct than Pepe. But with Arteta you just dont know.

  15. Watching Arsenal playing with some fluidity was easy on the eye and a lot more calming than the usual Arteta Ball rubbish that we’ve often been fed. The standout for me was the forward movement by Ceballos, Odergaard, Bellerin and boy wonder Martinellii.Even William was decent. I don’t rate Elneny’s performance, any player in the Premier league or even Championship could have done a similar job. I would not have hit the ball as cleanly but even I could have hit the ball on target considering the time and space he had. What is frustrating is the fact that Arsenal have not been able to create more of these opportunities for the midfielders. Too often the ball is simply crossed directly to opposition central defenders with almost pin point accuracy. A wins a win even against such toothless opponents but The stand out this week is the excellent spirit of the Manchester United fans for their protest. If it were Arsenal, we would have been gloating at our league position and full of ourselves. Arsenal fans must also continue their protests and embarrass the Kroenkes at every turn, otherwise we’ll be stuck in Groundhog Day limbo forever.

  16. Great win against a very poor side. If we talk about those who played the Ryan, Martinelli, Elneny, Ceballos, Luis did very well and Bellerin but Willian for me is a waste of money and a blocker of a homegrown talent. The side were very content with one goal whereas more cutting edge was needed. Shame about Luis but I do thing Holding and Mari should start on Thursday. Had Luis come through he would have played Thursday. As for Auba, he’s getting back and we need him and Pepe firing. I hoped Xhaka would be rested or play in midfield but it seems certain he will play LB now. Odegaard needs a good game to kick start himself after injury or maybe he was rushed back early.

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