Arsenal fly into the next round with runaway victory

Arsenal jetted off to the Czech Republic today with their tie with Slavia Prague in the balance, but put the game to bed within 25 minutes of play.

The Gunners came racing out the blocks, and were denied the opening goal when Emile Smith Rowe was deemed to have been offside by a hair, and VAR eventually scrapped the goal after an extended review period.

Before you could get over the decision however, that man ESR has nutmegged two defenders on the edge of the Slavia box to play in Nicolas Pepe, who made no mistake in putting the ball away.

We continued to make our dominance pay when Bukayo Saka was taken out inside the box to gift us a penalty to double our lead, a chance Alexandre Lacazette was not about to turn down.

That man Saka was again involved in the next goal, as he picks the ball up on the wide right and cuts inside, before firing his effort from distance to catch the goalkeeper in no-mans-land.

Despite another couple of chances, Slavia managed to make it to the break behind by only three.

The Czechs came out in the second without any real purpose. They appeared to be playing as though they had accepted not only that they were being eliminated, but playing as if they knew they were second-best.

All the best chances were for Arsenal, and Alexandre Lacazette looked to have earned us another penalty when he appeared to be taken down inside the box, but the referee decided not to punish the home side.

The Frenchman did add a fourth after receiving the ball in space in the box, but he managed to turn the two defenders to get his shot away with his left to beat three players and score.

Gabriel Martinelli came off the bench and was causing problems, before Folarin Balogun also came on late to add to his minutes earlier in the campaign, although the tie was assured before they were introduced.

Will our rivals be worried about Arsenal picking up steam in this competition?

Patrick

Tags Europa League Slavia Prague

133 Comments

  1. kev says:

    I never expected this but of course this club has been so unpredictable even over the decade. It was a brilliant first half for us. We started like a house on fire, and were rewarded with three goals. After that the match was pretty much done and dusted. They couldn’t get past Partey today. He was resilient. I don’t rate Xhaka highly but I must stay true to what I saw. He put in a mature and assured display as a makeshift LB. The front three looked clinical today compared to the 1st leg. All in all it was a win which showed maturity and experience because Slavia got outsmarted. We need to win this Europa League and hopefully we go harder in the next match. Thanks to the lads.

    1. Goonster says:

      I was impressed with Xhaka’s maturity, leadership and effort at Leftback.
      He was solid all game.

      1. kev says:

        Yeah its a bit hard for me to say but he was great haha

        1. instrooments says:

          Noticed for a while, that a different Xhaka shows up when playing defence… Seen that at CB, now at LB..

          We might have had a utility player all this while or better he probably would have had a more successful career as a defender who knows..

          Same way I feel Luiz would have been a world class defensive midfielder..

          Some players get lucky at youth level to meet coaches that discovered their best positions like the bales, Cech, Drogbas even Pepe started out as a go 😁

        2. Dan says:

          Hey peeps
          Help me out
          Couldn’t watch the game
          Was Xhakah left back all.did we play a 3 -5-2
          BBC have confused me lol

          1. Dan says:

            Ignore me
            read his Twitter x

    2. Gily says:

      Actually 4 on the break, but var decided to chalk away 1, the very first

  2. Eddie says:

    I ain’t got much to say tonight.. I was calm last week after that draw, I’ll stay calm today too.
    Supporting and backing my manager and my team.
    Only 3 games stands between us and UCL plus the Europa league trophy.
    That was a good win and players deserved their rest.
    Glad for those us who never wanted Auba in the lineup today.
    It was 11 men fighting and pressing for the win.
    Good win.. onto the next one boys.
    Looking forward to the game against Unai Emery’s yellow soldiers

    1. R says:

      Auba got malaria. Hope when he returns he will be better than last weeks

      1. Eddie says:

        Hope he gets well soon.. great guy.
        Hope he stays out of our Europa league lineups and these hungry players continue.
        Sorry, I know he’s the captain and I know what he can do, but he’s been off this season and far too behind.
        I ain’t looking forward to seeing him start Europa league games for now.
        Until he reverts back to the PEA we know I ain’t gon hold on to his last season performance

        1. R says:

          I agree @Eddie
          He better earn his place back now that Pepe Lacazette and Martinelli stepped up.

          1. ozziegunner says:

            πŸ‘ πŸ‘

    2. gotanidea says:

      Lacazette, Smith-Rowe and Saka clicked well again. They kept the ball superbly, but it could be different if Aubameyang played instead of Pepe

      Pepe worked his socks off and the other outfield players were so solid

    3. Phenom says:

      Callum Chabers is my MOTM. He’s better than Bellerin. Glad the lads showed up today. Arteta is destined to win trophies. Next stop………..villareal.

      1. Sean Williams says:

        We bought Chambers as a right back too.

        1. ozziegunner says:

          πŸ‘

    4. Alanball08 says:

      How good were we tonight
      Can’t hear any one one saying they were poor opposition tonight
      MA Boo boys gone to bed early tonight…only joking ..WELL DONE ALL..
      LOVE THAT WINNING FEELING
      onwards and upwards

  3. gotanidea says:

    All our outfield players were fantastic! Leno didn’t have any threat at all because everybody in front of him was great

    Emery is our next obstacle and his high pressing system can be very dangerous, since he’s got hardworking players at Villareal. But I believe Arteta can outsmart him

    1. kev says:

      Partey really stifled them today.

      1. gotanidea says:

        He was immense in defense tonight

    2. Eddie says:

      The game against Emery’s team would be interesting. I’m hoping for some of the guys it’ll be personal and they’ll get it against him.
      Saka be like πŸ₯ΊπŸ₯Ί while shooting him out of Europa league .
      Emery gave him his chance after all

      1. gotanidea says:

        Kudos to Emery for Saka. We’ll be reunited with Coquelin as well, who could be suited for Arteta’s system if we didn’t sell him

        1. kev says:

          Coquelin was so undervalued its unbelievable. His 14/15 season stands out as one of the best I’ve ever seen from a defensive midfielder. He was simply everywhere and made interception after interception. How was he even reading the game. It was like there were two of him. His defending was world class that season. He was also fantastic in his first season at Valencia then got injured. There was one match where he pocketed the whole Barca midfield in the Spanish Cup. I really liked the guy you know.

          1. gotanidea says:

            His positioning was great, unfortunately Wenger and Emery sucked in positional plays. Glad he’s made a career in Spain

          2. ozziegunner says:

            Agree with you both, that Coquelin was underrated at Arsenal, but honestly gotanidea, how was Emery responsible for his departure? As head coach, he had no say in transfers and he has retained and selected him at Villarreal.

          3. Shine says:

            4gotten abt him. I sa hime played B4 Seems a good player.

            Where was he? On loan?

    3. ozziegunner says:

      gotanidea, if one compares the quality of players available in the Arsenal squad across the park, to those playing for Emery at Villarreal, it should be no contest.
      As always the question will be will Arsenal turn up over two legs, like they did in this tie in Prague?

      1. gotanidea says:

        As long as Lacazette, Smith-Rowe and Saka start together, I think we’ll have a good chance to go to EL final. Their chemistry is better than other attackers at Arsenal and they always put in extra effort

        About Coquelin, he could’ve stayed longer if Emery could use his great positioning ability. But I’m also happy for Emery, because he seems to have found the hardworking players he always wanted at Villareal

  4. Skills1000 says:

    Good performance. Well done Guys. We can get to the final

  5. Sean says:

    Do we offer Laca a new 2 year deal?

    1. Gily says:

      Stop it!
      We can now sell him for good money

      1. Johnze says:

        That is very sad. We should sell auba. I am sure laca would get less money and and is also 2 years younger. Auba is not a leader. And he resigned just because no big club showed up last year. Had Barcelona tried, he would have ask to leave don’t you think. If i was arsenal management o would try to offload auba and willian (hard task) this summer and resign laca.

        1. ozziegunner says:

          Johnze, like you I would prefer to keep Lacazette and sell Aubameyang for the reasons you stated.

  6. R says:

    Go go Arsenal! I hope we smash Villarreal.

  7. Kev82 says:

    Great win πŸ‘Œ I was confident we would cruise through and the team didn’t disappoint.. the yellow sub next, we can do this COYG πŸ’ͺπŸ‘Š

    1. Sue says:

      Fantastic result, Kev! Everyone put a shift in… my motm – ESR πŸ₯°
      I’d felt so on edge all day, last time I felt that bad we lost 4-0 at Southampton 🀣

      2 weeks today.. it had to be Unai, didn’t it?! Mouthwatering ties, Kev…

      1. Kev82 says:

        No need Sue like I said last night that slavia team is bang average πŸ˜‰πŸ˜„ yes he was immense and what a lovely goal from Saka πŸ˜„ was that the boxing day game ? πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚. Haha Sue fire up youtube Unai Emery prime minister.. darren farley that certainly clears up the lockdown confusion πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

        1. Sue says:

          Yes, it was a lovely goal. 2 gems aren’t they?! I said to my nephew we’ll take Rice, Rice baby off your hands, he said only if we can have Saka – no chance!!
          Yes boxing day πŸ™ˆ
          Haha, better have a butchers!

          1. Kev82 says:

            Oh they have made a tremendous difference in that Arsenal team Sue we certainly aren’t the same without them πŸ˜„ yeah your right I wouldn’t swap Saka with no one I love the kid he’s a superstar in the making πŸ‘Š oh yeah mane and co destroyed us πŸ˜† well two basque spaniards go head to head in 2 weeks can’t wait πŸ˜„

          2. Sue says:

            Farley’s facial expressions 🀣 I heard the words tennis, park and allowed haha!! He’s brilliant… imagine him doing a Villarreal v Arsenal special πŸ€ͺ

          3. Kev82 says:

            Hahaha the eyes cracks me up everytime πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ and the first of all good ebening half way through the interview πŸ˜† haha I bet he will definitely do one now we’re up against unai lol it’s gold πŸ˜†

          4. Sue says:

            Quality 🀣
            So, the Mancs will be up against Mkhi and Smalling…

          5. Kev82 says:

            Big mick and Chris could spoil the party Sue πŸ˜› I hope so I’d rather a foreign final as we’ve been hopeless against english opposition in europe. Chelsea in champions league and europa league, liverpool and man utd in the champions league 😩 I wonder how long Auba will miss I heard he has malaria 😳

          6. Sue says:

            Plus Dzeko loves a goal at Old Trafford, Kev πŸ˜‰
            Yeah poor sod.. I hope he won’t be out for too long πŸ₯Ί

          7. Kev82 says:

            Big Ed I forget about him Sue yeah even scores when they decide to hit utd for 6️⃣ πŸ˜„it would be nice to have him as an option for the game if not Auba then Balogun and not nketiah! Well Fulham next Sue still an important game we need to build momentum for the semi final πŸ‘Š

  8. Declan says:

    Well, I fell asleep watching Emerdale and woke up 30 minutes into the game, and we were 3 nil up, couldn’t believe it. Saw the goals and highlights at half time and saw second half. Well done the lads and so glad for you. Now for a reunion with Emery! By the way, as everyone had been saying a week or so ago, sell Laca, he’s crap…. 🀣

    1. Sue says:

      Was Emmerdale that bad?!! πŸ˜„

      1. Declan says:

        Not sure Sue but we went to the pub after dog walk earlier and are not use to it πŸ€ͺ. The pub that is, not Emerdale 😳

        1. Sue says:

          Ha, that explains it πŸ˜‰

  9. Goonerboy says:

    Next stop: Good ebening

    Let’s gooooo gunners!

    1. ozziegunner says:

      How’s your Spanish, Goonerboy?

  10. MartinelliTheBench says:

    What a wonderful sight….all players looking like they want to be there

    No Willian or Auba is a breathe of fresh air. I also prefer Mari to Luiz

    Top it off with no Xhake in the midfield to slow play down and look how quick we transitioned. Proof is in the pudding.

    1. Eddie says:

      Always gotta be someone trying to make Xhaka look like a terrible player after every match game.

      1. MartinelliTheBench says:

        Actually Xhaka looked good at the back, I much prefer him there. He played really well.

        Stop being so negative Eddie.

        1. Eddie says:

          I’m not being negative bro.. I just pointed out how you just tried to make Xhaka look bad again.
          Everyone had a solid game and here you are saying Xhaka not playing midfield didn’t slow down our moves or transitioning.
          Do you guys always have to find something to blame him with every time?

          I don’t even care about his performance today because he’s never played bad once as a LB, even when he’s dropping thereto cover for Saka. I care about the fact that he’s actually been our best and only consistent midfielder this season.
          Something he never gets credit for

        2. RW1 says:

          spot on .. team has been held back by xhaka in middle … been obvious to anyone with half a football brain for the last 3 seasons … he is better in defence … at least with a calm and collected player like mari next to him … but clearly no place for him when tiernay returns … another one for the shop window along with luiz bellerin willian and possibly aube who are all surplus but could generate some revenue to bring in back-up for tiernay a more determined striker and money for the norwegian kid … no one talked about ceballos who was excellent again tonight … talk about biased assessments … but i assume wont be with us next season …

      2. Declan says:

        Yes Eddie I agree, but another great game he had at left back.

        1. Eddie says:

          He’s always been solid there IMHO.
          I just think his bad times have so exaggerated that fans don’t care when he plays well.
          Xhaka’s bad history doesn’t make him get the credit. If he plays 9 games solid out of 10. Fans won’t credit him and would rather stay on the negative side, expecting him to have a brain farts. Then when he pops up with the brain fart in that one game, fans come up with there I said it, we said it he’s bad.
          I’m just glad we’re into the semis bro

          1. jon fox says:

            Eddie why do you think those fans are constantly not rating him? Presumably there are reasons! I am one of those fans and my reasons are he is ponderous, slow turning, slow acting, slow passing, all when,in midfield.

            IF we are to put up with himany longer, it can only be in defence, where SOME of those faults are minimised ,at least in some games.

            Id get him out the club if I could. BUT again I ask you, why do you think we fans who not not rate him want him out. Could it be they all share my reasons, do you think!

      3. ozziegunner says:

        Eddie, some people won’t give credit where it is due. Sure criticize a bad game, but Xhaka was solid and played well.

    2. Reggie says:

      A lot of obvious truth in that Marinellithe bench. A very crude player that does nothing for our midfield but slow it down. The pace in the middle to set up attacks was blindingly obvious tonight.

      1. Declan says:

        Reggie , what are you trying to say mate? You’re not making sense.

        1. Reggie says:

          That xhaka is a Donkey, i thought that was obvious Declan.

  11. Ben says:

    Start the Mari vs Gabriel debate

    1. Declan says:

      No need, Mari has always been bettter.

  12. Joe. S says:

    Has Xhaka found his best position? Solid at the back and pretty close to man of the match. Whew! Never thought I’d be saying that.

    1. PJ-SA says:

      He’s played against SheffU and Slavia.

      Both games we completely dominated so it’s difficult to tell really from just 2 games but looked good yes. Only issue is pace, he’ll struggle to defend against most wingers

      He doesn’t attack much but what that does do is allow Cellabos a bit more freedom which seems to work well

      1. Declan says:

        That’s it, give credit where it’s due…….🀫

      2. instrooments says:

        Exactly he doesn’t attack much, concentrates more on the duty of defending which seems to suit his style and the team..

        We might as well be solving a lot of the issues in the team with what we have currently.

        Pray for more wisdom on Arteta, I hope he sustains all his new discoveries and not go back to panic mode

        1. ozziegunner says:

          πŸ‘ Particularly, with the forward line, plus a now fit Calum Chambers.

          1. Johnze says:

            And particularly too with the defence. Stick with mari holding. They were already the pair that played during our return back to form in December. Then MA started to rotate with gabriel and luiz and when had these mistakes. Stability is important in defence. Many ex great defenders confirmed

          2. ozziegunner says:

            Agree with your stable defense point, Johnze.

          3. Joash. says:

            Well, xhaka has been impressive , has a leader of the pack. He triumph in the match just because our captain ( auba)wasn’t on the pitch, cos he’d have played at his front, but pepe ran the show, controlled aerial duel, position with good leg works than PEA, I want our captain to be benched for games to see how we’ve been cheating ourselves with him while on the pitch this season.
            What PEA has done past back was now a history, cos it’s doesn’t help us now in the league presently. We have hungry guys who want to play for the shirt and the team. Good spirit.
            Pepe played out of his comfort zone today and made the opposition shit in their hole. Good tracking back, good dribbles, good goal and assist for the team.

            Arteta knows what pepe his capable of doing in both wings, but he triumph down in the LWF, than auba.

            Auba would be forced Into the team and we’ll go back to our default settings.
            Williams has been bad. ESR has been. Superb all matches. So what the point of forcing our captain into the first 11 when he also knows how bad he is this season.

            Emery on our hit list to be down as we cruise into the final.

            Not to forget. AUBA isn’t playing with passion any more.

  13. Gily says:

    It is crystal clear now the class between these two teams is 7up.

    And our 72 spent on Pepe was well spent.

  14. Sid says:

    Nice win! Lets finish the season on a high by going on a winning run!
    COYG!

  15. pires says:

    Saka was clinacal same as Pepe …..Smith Row….Well if he can add goals to his game….Laca was brillant…Bring on Emery

  16. Reggie says:

    It obviously goes without saying what a FANTASTIC performance and what a great result. How good is that midfield of Partey and Ceballos, so much quicker and more ability without the sluggish xhaka. How good is Chambers at RB, so much more solid than flakey Bellerin. Pepe, an absolute great game and the front 4 were excellent. We can all be happy tonight and look forwards to a match between our worst manager and second worst manager. LOL
    Well done to all for tonight.

    1. Sue says:

      🀣 Reggie!!

      1. Reggie says:

        Ah ha Sue, just a bit of fun, but will be interesting.

        1. Sue says:

          πŸ‘

    2. RSH says:

      Very happy with the RB change. Bellerin has felt very entitled to the RB position for several years now for no particular reason. Looking forward to seeing a refresh in that position this summer.

      1. ozziegunner says:

        πŸ‘

    3. jon fox says:

      Agreed on ALL your points Reggie, EXCEPT when you attack Arteta. On THAT, we are in different camps.

      I would love XHAKA to leave us completely. BUT AS WE ARE STUCK WITH HIM, WE MUST LEAVE HIM AT LB (while Tierney is injured) as he is less damaging to us and to our passing pace and to our team flow, when in defence.

      He is at least tall and strong, assets in defence.

      Never rated BELLERIN IN THE SLIGHTEST RIGHT FROM HIS VERY START WITH US. SIMPLY PUT, HE HAS NEVER BEEN ABLE TO DEFEND AT ALL.

    4. ozziegunner says:

      There’s been worse at Arsenal in the past, Reggie.
      Comparing Arsenal and Villarreal squads, I would be confident of winning the semi final if Arsenal turns up as they did in Prague.
      Emery is a factor to dent my confidence, because he has Villarreal over achieving in the Spanish League and Europa League. Despite what you and others may think he is a good manager and coach, respected among his peers.

  17. RSH says:

    Attackers ALL DELIVERED TODAY! At last! Clinical in front of the goal EARLY in the game makes a massive, massive difference!

  18. PJ-SA says:

    Our newly discovered system of having less attacking fullbacks seems to work well. Defenders defending primarily πŸ‘Œ

    The added security seems to give a lot more freedom for our midfield and forwards to play their game.

    Granted our last 2 games we’ve completed dominated so difficult to tell but it looks good so far.

    1. Sean M says:

      Good observation!

    2. instrooments says:

      Spot on PJ… Funny thing is that we have dominated a lot of teams this season but failed to put the ball in the back of the net..

      Let’s see how far this new system takes us, as far as Arteta doesn’t start changing things as he often does due to returning players…

      Odegaard, aubameyang, Tierney, Luiz are some of his favorites in the first eleven…so how he manages to give all game time is key to more success..

      I feel some players have shown were they fit in the arsenal team and should maintain these positions..
      Chambers Pepe Saka…

      Saka can play both sides but scores more on the right

      Pepe can play both sides but performs better on the left( aubameyang is never a winger, and shud interchange with laca for the CF role)

      ESR can play wings and CAM role but performs better at the CAM role (Odegaard shud b a backup)

      Ceballos can play CM and DM but plays better at CM, expresses himself better without having to worry bout breaking up play and all

      Chambers owns the RB the lad is a hard worker sprinting to and fro , also has the height for defending set pieces.

      Mari brings calmness to our defence, he can be paired with others..

      Every successful team needs a good spine of players at their best positions..

      Look at how Man Utd sorted out the Rashford CF or LW issue, Paul Pogba DM, CM, CAM issue and the Fred issue… Now they look like steam that can beat anybody, sometime last season solksjaer was on the brink of being sacked..

      Better times ahead, I don’t believe that we have a shitty team, West Ham players looked shitty last season even Chelsea under Lampard…
      All we need is a clear path and consistency

      1. ozziegunner says:

        πŸ‘ πŸ‘ πŸ‘

  19. Hope says:

    Is it just me or is Xhaka better at LB?

    1. Reggie says:

      I think he is and we might get 10 mil as Left back. LOL

  20. Kenya 001 says:

    Well deserved win no complain. On to the next game. Well done boys. That boy smith though! Is he our lucky jam? When he plays everything just clicks

    1. Sue says:

      He’s outstanding!!

  21. Khadii says:

    Mari Oh Mari!
    Another clean sheet.
    If its not broken, don’t bother fixing it.
    Holding and Mari for now please.
    With Chambers and Xhaka at Fullback.
    Saka Laca Rowe and Martinelli/Pepe
    Partey and (i still doubt Ceballos)
    Team looks more balanced right now.
    Its no coincidence the clean sheets back to back.
    Auba should earn his place nxt season.
    Balogun and Azeez should be transitioned into d team.
    Balogun to replace Laca
    Azeez to replace Ceballos
    Bring on Fulham

    1. Declan says:

      Good analysis khadii

  22. Unge says:

    Finally,we can settle this argument of whether Arteta was the right man to replace Unai Emry.April 29th cant came any sooner

    1. ozziegunner says:

      Arsenal player for player is a better squad than Villarreal. It will depend on selections and whether the Arsenal performance against Prague today, turns up over two legs.

      1. Reggie says:

        Correct Ozzie!

      2. instrooments says:

        Spot on ozzie

  23. gotanidea says:

    Arsenal have scored 3+ goals in four consecutive away games in all competitions for the first time, since December 1932

  24. Sirjoe says:

    Arteta out!😌

  25. guy says:

    Super performance with not one dud. Without Willian and Auba involved the guys all sweated blood. Gonna dream tonight of Saka ESR and Pepe haring forward with Laca spoilt for choice of who to pass to. So many stellar performances. MA kudos for good selections, subs, tactics and motivation. The whole 11 are undroppable surely.
    Xhaka when there’s no-one to pass backwards to is a truly responsible, positionally astute, hard and safe tackling defender.

    Holding and Mari must stay there (sorry Gabriel). Calm, strong in the air, well matched, reasonable passers who dont overplay in dangerous areas.

    Chambers – proper defender with determination and a great engine going forward – rarely caught out of position at either end.

    Cabellos a whirling dervish, so much better without defensive responsiblities and Partey next to him.

    Partey now becoming the player we hoped for – less errors more stamina. Gives the whole team more freedom to play.

    Is Pepe soon actually going to be worth that 72m? Non-stop player, rapid, enthusiastic, determined, confident, becoming consistent, great finish. For me he is now a proper EPL star.

    Laca – a real captains performance. In so many ways the fulcrum of this team. Deserves the armband and another year.

    ESR makes the team mobile through his fluidity, unselfishness, workrate and intelligence. MOTM.

    Saka even when he’s quiet he makes things from nothing, quiet second half but he’d already done enough damage.

    Please MA dont drop any of these to accommodate Auba, Willian, Luiz or Bellerin. With Tierney, Martinelli, Balogun in the wings this season could for once end not with a wimper, but with a bang.

    1. guy says:

      And I didn’t even mention Odegaard, Saliba, Azeez. I almost can’t wait for next season already! Oh and no qualms vs Villareal. They have one man with a point to prove. But we have 11.

      1. Sue says:

        I’ll be dreaming of ESR, Saka, Pepe and Laca also, so may see you there πŸ˜„

      2. ozziegunner says:

        guy, one will be Saka, who will hopefully shake Emery’s hand and say thanks for the opportunity, another will be Partey, who will say, better late than never.

  26. ken1945 says:

    What a great performance – watched the analysis after the game and when we attacked them, the lads were unbelievable.

    There was not one weakness tonight and, if anyone wants to see how a forward should play while being captain, look no further than Lacazette.
    He was brilliant and the players all reacted to him.

    When he kneeled in front of the opponents in a show of solidarity, he set the tone for what was expected of him.

    Well done MA, despite the injuries and absentees, the team you put out was excellent and I have waited all season for this – we DO HAVE the players, so let’s kick on from this.
    Proud of everyone tonight.

    1. guy says:

      Yay Ken!

    2. Reggie says:

      Ken you are correct but Arteta only seems to stumble on things when we have injury and he is forced into things. ESR, Pepe on the left, Ceballos or Odegaard partnering Partey in midfield and Chambers at RB. Maybe i will give him Chambers because before he put him in the team, he did say he was flying in training. It will be a telling match up with Mr Emery, looking forwards to it.

    3. Phil says:

      But that’s it in a nutshell Ken- this performance confirms we have the players big they have been let down by this novice manager. There’s still a long way to go in the league and this cup before we say too much more

      1. Reggie says:

        We do have the players 100% Phil, we have a very good squad that has greatly underperformed, thats a big difference to a poor squad.

      2. ozziegunner says:

        Phil, it could be argued that these players have let down a number of managers. Yes, it is the Manager’s job to make the right selections, apply the correct tactics and motivate the players, but he can’t play for them. Unfortunately we never know whether Arsenal players will turn up on match day.

      3. guy says:

        Or you can look at it from another viewpoint Phil for at least half of that team – that they were previously average but our novice manager has improved them. Was ESR this good at huddersfield? Was Pepe this good when Emery played him? Was Saka this good when he first got into the team? Was Xhaka EVER as good at Arsenal?
        Might it not be that ANY manager usually has transitional issues when introducing a lot of new faces whilst at the same time transforming the teams way of playing?
        He is tremendously respected for his ideas by most professionals within the game. He has cocked up a lot in some areas and because of them he may fail, but I really can’t agree that he is faling to improve those that can be improved. He may be letting down the club if you follow your usual points comparison route, but the players? No

        1. ozziegunner says:

          guy, poor example with Pepe, if you look at his stat’s under Emery.

    4. jon fox says:

      The sort of performance KEN that has given us real hope that we could beat MANUTD in the final, which I suspect we will have to, to win the comp.

      Previously, I gave us little hope, but now…….!

      BEST PERF OF THE SEASON I THOUGHT, EVEN THOUGH MA played it down, wisely! I HAVE LONG BELIEVED THAT Xhaha in midfield destroys our flow and pace.

      With him at LB that did not happen this time and he is our only available left footed player who can deputise for Tierney in defence , assuming SAKA IS TOO VALUABLE FURTHER UP, AS HE IS. And Pepe playing on his natural left side, AT LAST, gave us proper balance. Huge agreement on LACA AND HIS WONDERFUL ACTION!

  27. ken1945 says:

    Reggie, Phil and Guy, couldn’t agree with you all more.
    Xhaka at LB though – yes, he WAS forced into it, but credit where it’s due Reggie – he could have put Saka back there, but had the hindsight to do something none of us, I believe, ever thought of!!

    No excuses in the next game – we have all seen what the club should be achieving with the group of players MA has.

    1. Reggie says:

      We do have the players 100% Phil, we have a very good squad that has greatly underperformed, thats a big difference to a poor squad.

      1. Reggie says:

        Ken, this sounds like im knocking xhaka for tonight but im not. Cedric or Bellerin could have done what xhaka did tonight, sit and defend what comes, he wasn’t one of the most influencial players, he didn’t have to be but he did a job and i cant knock him for that.

        1. guy says:

          Bellerin sit and defend what comes? I’m not sure hector even knows where to STAND and defend, Reggie, let alone sit.

  28. ozziegunner says:

    Great captain’s performance by Lacazette, but what does a defender have to do for him to be awarded a foul in the box? Be hit over the head with a goal post upright?

    1. Reggie says:

      Laca has proved time and again, if he is trusted and played right, he is a very good player. I dont think since the day he got to this club he has had a fair deal.

      1. ozziegunner says:

        πŸ‘ I agree, underrated and undervalued team player. Benched when in form and people wonder why his confidence drops.

      2. guy says:

        With you both there. Such a shame that he reaches pension age before we learn how to best use him. Unlike Auba, its so unfair to judge him solely on goals. For me he is so much more suitable than Auba to be full time skipper.
        OT – my cousin got malaria 20 years ago. It regularly flares up and physically he has never been quite the same since. So watch this space.

    2. guy says:

      No, thats only in Aussie Rules Oz!

      1. ozziegunner says:

        guy, Arsenal should look at how the Sydney Swans have invested in youth and are flying this season.

        1. guy says:

          I really think its worth a crack Oz, and that MA is the perfect coach to implement it. He IS bringing them through, maybe not as quickly as some would like, but its a big leap physically as well as technically, and we risk long term injury or confidence issues if theyre not ready to truly compete yet.

  29. kori says:

    Good win today. ESR set us on our way by playing a key role in the first two goals. Team did good today. hope they can win the next 3 matches in the EL and take home the trophy.

  30. ozziegunner says:

    Arsenal showed their potential in the last two matches, when they turn up motivated and come out of the box fast with power, pace, precision and flair.

    1. guy says:

      Agree Oz. At the stage we are it, the two crucial areas are the confidence to play attacking football without fear, and playing hard and fast from the first whistle every game. Both of these are motivational issues, and I hope Arteta is at last getting to grips with these aspects, as he probably would not require that skill set as a technical coach at City.

      1. SueP says:

        Guy
        I agree with your post – in particular your last sentence. What we have is a rookie manager. Should he have hit the ground running just because he played under Wenger and worked with Pep?
        I recall that there was a general acceptance that as the club had taken on a beginner it was likely to be a bumpy road from time to time. There were calls for β€˜give him time’ and so on.
        Now there is euphoria due to an excellent win but there will be a banana skin ahead and then it will Arteta out again.
        Ive had my moments of sheer frustration- haven’t we all? , but the reality of Arteta being an instant roaring success was always likely to be low.

        This is why some on JA have called for patience – me included. Not open ended by any means. There is no point flogging a dead horse, but MA is only 16 months into his first managerial post and I can see that there is every reason to be hopeful. It was always going to be a learning process. We knew that but it goes out of the window when games go badly.
        Let’s hope they are on fire at the weekend and the last two wins become 3. Momentum is required

        1. ozziegunner says:

          SueP, it annoys me however, that given the enormity of following the 18 year reign of Arsene Wenger, Unai Emery was trashed after a short tenure. No patience was shown with him, because he was an experienced manager.

        2. jon fox says:

          Sue P How refeshing to read a mature and sensible post with realistic expectations from a fan who knows life and her football onions. KNOWiNG THERE ARE PEOPLE OF YOUR INTELLECT ON HERE – AMONG ALL THE HASTY KIDS- is the entire reason I stay on JA.

          BUT FOR MATURE FANS LIKE YOU, IT WOULD BE POINTLESS TRYING TO DISCUSS WITH THE OTHER TYPE.

          You consistently write sound sense Sue P and I HOPE YOU NEVER LEAVE JA. Honestly|!

  31. Shakir says:

    Superb win
    Now emery,gonna be an interesting tie cuz he knows atleast half of our players strengths and weaknesses
    Infact gonna be very interesting

    1. Sue says:

      What a week for you, Shakir – Real and Arsenal through!! The super cup is still on πŸ™‚

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