Arsenal played great, despite being robbed by the officials

Hi everyone, first of all I have to apologise for missing the Spurs v Arsenal game yesterday, I didn’t even get to watch it myself. We changed islands yesterday and rolled up at a new hotel in good time, but they had no internet at all! I was gutted and spent a few hours turning the laptop on and off! But they finally got it fixed this morning and I got to watch all the highlights at last, and then I was gutted all over again, especially at the missed penalty!

Anyway, I’ll try to make up for it today while the internet is on…..

There were very few people that tipped Arsenal to come away with the points against Tottenham yesterday, but they very nearly did so only to be thwarted in the last minute by Aubameyang’s missed penalty, although that should have definitely been retaken. We should have still been in front up until then as it was very obvious that there were at least three Spurs players offside just before Kane was awarded a penalty as well.

Unai Emery was not too unhappy with our performance and our mentality, but obviously had to point out that VAR could have made a big difference. He said after the game: “Good afternoon. I am proud of the players, of our work and then you can win, you can lose, you can draw like we did. But above all, we played like a team, feeling together and pushing individually and collectively. After the adaptation to the match was good, our moments in 90 minutes, they were strong for us to think that also we could win this match.

“Two months ago, I said to everybody that I think VAR is coming to help the referees. Today, for me, the referees were with a big personality, but it’s not enough for making the best decisions in difficult actions in the box for them and for us. I think VAR is coming to help them to be fair for a match like today. After, in 90 minutes, if you create chances and you score, you can win. They also created chances and our goalkeeper saved or they shot [off target]. But I think today that we played with a big collective spirit and tactically, I think we adapted well to battle them in our moments, also with transitions and some quality actions from our players. I am very proud of the players because after the 1-1 we got into their box to score the second goal and to win. This is the mentality that we want.”

It was a much more confident display from our players, and it was good to see, but I would have been happier to see all three points on the board!



  1. A match which will be remembered by the poor standard of refereeing by Mr.Taylor.A number of players should have been sent off including xhaka,Rose and Sanchez while Torreria was to me unfortunate to be shown a red card.Yet again an error of judgement by Mustafi cost us the points albeit that Kane was clearly offside.Why does Emery persist in accommodating Mustafi, even playing him out of position when otjer, better options were available in AMN and indeed Jenkinson who did well against Bournemouth.The opposition must get a real boost when they see Mustafi in our team sheet.£35 m down the drain.

  2. In Relation To Scoring – I Rate GIROUD & AUBAMEYANG thus:

    TAP INS (from square-plays):
    giroud – 80% auba – 75%

    ONE-ON-ONE (usually from counterattacks):
    giroud – 10% auba – 60%

    giroud – 90% auba – 10%

    giroud – 25% auba – 55%

    giroud – 60% auba – 30%

    Overall TAP-INS seem to be both of them STRONG POINT (to scoring) with Giroud still having Headers as a very strong point

    Giroud – WAY Better at HEADINGS & 1-2’s
    Auba – Better at 1-ON-1’s & Long Curls

    Overall, both are VERY AVERAGE

    Lacazette doesn’t come below 50% in any of the above MODES OF SCORING – he just doesn’t have one as a STRONG POINT

  3. Rose went round kicking every player in red plus the goalkeeper then when tackled by the smallest player on the pitch goes down in a heap screaming in exaggerated pain .Cue,the pathetic ref then sends off the smallest player who had won the ball aggresivly but fairly.
    Spurs where lucky Arsenal wasn’t.

  4. Even Shearer said they were lucky to get a point!
    I am devastated……
    Nothing we can do about it now (the abysmal refereeing) just have to deal with it… it still feels like a loss though… we need VAR!!!!
    We’ll be without Torreira against the Mancs… can it get any worse??

    1. Sue one point to keep the home happy ????! Really I thought we played well and deserve all the three points, but the ref was generally terrible. So it was the fault of Abu that we didn’t win. I was really really pleased with the performance. I think we have a happier and better team now that everyone is working towards the same goal.

      1. Ha I did think of you & your fella, Pat! He’s the happier I bet! I bet it didn’t do your blood pressure any favours!
        I was devastated (Still am!) Yes we did well, especially after I saw the line up. Think I should have more faith in our team!!
        Oh well Man United next Sunday… don’t even want to try & predict that!! Hopefully we’ll win on Thursday ?

        1. I hope so Sue. I just want out team to work hard and be harmonious. No in fighting, no player outcasted, no rubbish football. Then we can build on what we have. Pat was a very relieved man and I was grumpy. We deserve the three points,Spurs were rubbish yesterday.

          1. I was too… how you can go from sheer joy when he pointed to the spot, to feeling totally shattered just seconds later was horrible…so a major meltdown ensued for all of about 10 minutes!! ?
            We’ll keep going Pat… we’ve played well lately. Although we have a pretty big task next Sunday against a Chilean pianist ???? COYG

            1. Shearer, for once, was very fair in his assessment. The second official’s positioning to not pick up the 4 Spurs players offside for the Mustafi foul decision was abyssmal, as well as the encroachment for the missed penalty. And people wonder why no English referees are good enough to officiate at the World Cup!
              Hopefully Arsenal will appeal Torreira’s red card, as he played the ball.

  5. Emery’s English looks like it’s improving.

    I think it’s good that he brought up the togetherness of the squad, because for me it has been clearly evident over the latest undefeated spell. We have looked more like a team lately, the unity looks good, we attack as a team and defend as one too. I was really worried after the Christmas period but I’m glad to see that we are still on track. The utd game will be very tough but I wouldn’t bet against us at the moment, not that I ever would. I think the players will dig deep and I’m hopeful we will put ourselves back into position, but we should not discount Che with those games in hand. I also believe Tott could easily be pulled back into the fray, and I’m sure they are no longer confident of holding any future gaps on the Arsenal. I hope this season goes well of course, but next season I can see us surpassing Tott once more.

  6. Lots of calls could have gone the other way and my only complaint with Torreira’s red was that Rose was more reckless in the incident with Leno. Aubayemang was never a penalty but once it’s give it needs to be retaken after Vertoghan encroached. That was the easiest call of the game apart from the opening whistle.

    Spurs seem happy with their resilience and a point. Gunners are gutted they didn’t take all three points. That speaks volumes – keep looking over your shoulders Spurs!

    1. @Trudeau – my brother it would appear that its we who need to be looking over OUR shoulder and not them. The record will show we need 6 points from the spurts and from the man united games combined. If look back and draw any positives its that leno and sokratis are growing as afcl ever presents. This apart its total senseless giving 7s, 8s & 9s for our teams contingent when we simply failed to [*consolidate] our premier league position. We started 4th and ended the day 5th…Hello!

  7. The ref should be ashamed of himself. We played well but we were our own downfall, Lacazette missed chances, Mustafi giving out a penalty, shoving a player like that.. PEA’s letdown.
    I heard PEA apologized and said he’ll make it up to us.
    Well I hope he meant he’ll make it up against Manchester United not Rennes.
    On Thursday I’ll be glad to see Eddie Nketiah lead the line against Rennes.
    Give the boy the chance, if he plays with our experience midfielders behind him, he’ll score. He’s that good

  8. I am so unbelievably frustrated! Just like at Old Traffold, I feel it’s 2pts dropped.

    There were definitely some eyebrows raised at the lineup, but one could understand Auba, and Ozil missing out, in regards to tactics and balance. And It was clearly an excellent move from Emery, as Ramsey scored, and Auba was absolute trash! Even Torreira on the bench didn’t overly concern me as Guendouzi has been brilliant this season, and he also played well. Now I don’t say this with hindsight, as I commented on this before the game, but Mustafi at RB was the one selection I just didn’t get. His passing his awful at the best of times, now he’s expected to cross as well? He’s a CB, and a poor one at that! I really feel Jenkinson or Lich should have started at RB. Hopefully that’s the last we see of Mustafi at RB, and fingers crossed, the last time we EVER see him in an Arsenal shirt again! Sell, sell, sell!

    Key moments:

    Mustafi giving away a pen with a brainless push, but it was clearly offside. Poor from the linesman.
    That miss from Laca in the 2nd half.
    Auba’s shocking pen, and all round dead performance.
    Very strange red for Torreira, when Rose only got a yellow for the same type of challenge (only much worse). Rose’s was much higher, and more dangerous as his leg came in at a straight angle (Torreira’s was much lower, and came in from the side). Arsenal should definitely appeal, and highlight the Rose challenge.


    9/10 from me. I thought he was brave with his lineup, but got his tactics spot on, brilliant intensity, and defensive responsibility shown from all. I liked the subs used, and the timing of them. This is what I love about Emery. He picks his teams based on the opponent, and doesn’t just go with what looks good on paper every game. If Wenger was still here, it would be Auba, Laca, Ozil, Miki starting together every game, which we know doesn’t work. As a unit, I thought we defended very well, and we were the better team. His plan worked, and it was really just three players that let him down, in Mustafi, Laca and Auba. Mustafi is the reason I cannot give Emery a 10/10, for reasons I have already stated, but hopefully with analysis of his performance at RB, we won’t see him again in that position.

    The game:

    Would have taken a point beforehand, but annoyed we didn’t win it after watching the game. Emery has got us performing so much better in these big games. We should have won at Old Traffold, and today, and we shouldn’t have lost at Stamford Bridge. We looked solid, and clearly Emery’s game plan was taken on board by the players. The players were very motivated, and the structure of the team is so much better these days. When we were defending, we had so many behind the ball, the back four were all within an arm’s length of each other, very compact, and we were closing down the spaces so quickly. After years of shocking defending, and giving opponents all the space in the world under Wenger, it was actually quite shocking to see, but lovely. We were very unlucky not to win today, and the officiating cost us.


    Best player – Sokratis. Absolute beast, and was born to defend. Gives us such stability when he’s playing, and similar to Van Djik at Liverpool, just the presence of Sokratis, improves all the defenders around him. Has to be or captain next season. Leno is a very close second. He was outstanding, and that double save! Mustafi robbed him of a clean sheet.

    Worst player – Auba. Had done nothing before the pen. Had a chance to become a hero, but fluffs his lines not once, but twice, in the space of about 2 seconds. Awful pen.

    Leno – 9
    Mustafi – 4
    Sokratis – 9
    Kos – 8.5
    Monreal – 8.5
    Xhaka – 8
    Guendouzi – 7.5
    Miki – 8
    Ramsey – 8
    Iwobi – 7.5
    Laca – 5.5

    Torreira – 7
    Ozil – 6
    Auba – 3

    1. I agree about Sokratis, he’s a rock! Leno was amazing… I agree with your ratings TMJW….. and it is 2 points dropped!! Although feels like 3 to me ?

      1. Same here. Feels like a defeat! Spurs were so lucky to get anything from that game, and I felt even worse when Utd won right at the end.

  9. On Untold Arsenal they have an article about having every stat imaginable about players, why not about referees? What an interesting read that would make! Would just highlight how awful they all are….
    Ref Watch on Sky tomorrow will be interesting too, I wonder if any of Taylor’s ‘decisions’ will be mentioned

  10. We should have had the three points in the bag on this one. I’ve lost count of the number of sitters Laca has missed this season, yet he’s scored when he had no right to. I’m happy with what he contributes to the team, but oh for a clinical striker!
    Nobody’s mentioned Iwobi’s defending. I thought he was having a bit of a quiet day anyway, and he was being rugby tackled by three spurs players every time he got the ball, but he gave Trippier the freedom of Wembley yesterday, against a better team (or Stoke) those crosses coming in would have been converted. The other result was that Monreal was being dragged out to cover, leaving space for Son to exploit. I thought we were really lucky not to have been punished for that. Apart from Xhaka and Mustafi the rest of the boys did well.
    How much do I love Sokratis!

  11. I’m starting to get worried about our forwards, we were complaining about creating chances but what’s the use when our strikers keep missing easy chances. Lacazette has missed sitters in the last two games and also missed easy chances all season, aubameyang has also missed chances all season, the chelsea game comes to mind where we should have at least drawn but lost due to missed chances. I love aubameyang and lacazette but i’m worried we wouldn’t get top four or win the europa if this problem persists. I know strikers miss chances but it’s becoming a recurring theme with them.

  12. We all have opinions about refereeing and vars and how football decisions need to reflect accuracy and be on point – that aside we played OK – But the truth is we were found to be lacking with our chances whenever they arose.

    We’ve praised and commended our play now – Now let’s be honest and answer the hard question were we good enough?

    The matter speaks for itself – It’s non-productive when fans do a post-mortem when the truth is the damage has already been done. Yesterdays was a do or die challenge and the up coming game against world cup winner pogba and company comes at a time when we least need it.

    *As it stands we’re good but we are not nearly good enough – bitter pill to swallow but its true.

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