Arsenal v Stoke review – Easy Peasy Threesy for galloping Gunners

After the horror show that Arsenal produced away to Stoke a few weeks ago, which was probably the worst 45 minutes from the Gunners for many a year, it was vital that Arsenal put on a much better showing in front of the Emirates crowd.

And the way we started that game, the Arsenal players would have been determined to begin the game well and we certainly did that. Begovic had already had to prodduce two very good saves from Alexis Sanchez and Tomas Rosicky in the opening minutes, but there was nothing their keeper could do to stop Laurent Koscielny scoring with a feee header from Alexis’ cross in the 6th minute.

THey were struggling to cope with the slick passing and link up play of Rosicky, Cazorla, Alexis and co, so they had no chance of putting us under the sort of pressure they do at home. Then with just one defender, Hector Bellerin, on the bench, our injury curse surfaced again, with Debuchy taking a bad knock after being pushed into the hoardings by Arnautovic. You could not make it up!

Wenger made the change quickly but it had knocked us off our stride and it took around 10 minutes before Giroud brought another great save from Begovic. The big Frenchman then came close again but put his shot high and wide. Giroud was also getting some rough treatment from Shawcross and as the ref kept letting it go he was losing his rag.

Then with about half an hour gone and Stoke starting to feel abit more confident, awesome Alexis scored our second with a beautiful run and precise finish with a little help in the build up from Rosicky. Then we nearly lost a second full back before halftime after Monreal was clattered by Crouch and needed a cut stitching up. Still no yellow cards though, even though Stoke admit what their tactics will be when facing Arsenal.

Although Arsenal had not managed to finish the game off, we did so almost straight after the restart, with an Alexis free kick creeping in the near post with a deflection. Now you thought it was all about how many we could score and keeping a clean sheet because Stoke looked beaten.

We produced some brilliant football, without finding another goal, before Wenger brought Walcott on for the Ox with 67 minutes on the clock. And he soon made the final change, Ozil for Giroud. Both subs did pretty well and had decent chances to score, but were understandably a bit rusty. Their time on the pitch will stand them and Arsenal in good stead though.

At least we managed to keep the clean sheet, get our revenge on Stoke and build confidence for the games to come. Now for Man City…..

Tags Alexis Debuchy Koscielny


  1. RSH says:

    best performance all season

    1. SoOpa AeoN says:

      clean sheet! REVENGE Looks sweet

      1. KickAssFan says:

        Wojciech Bite-me be like: “F**k!!! A clean sheet!”

        1. NY_Gunner says:


          1. almostawinner says:

            if we go to manc w ospina, roziscky, coq , we’ll do well. roz/coq are now our best CDM layer. arteta & esp flam arent going to be starting much … thank god. mert is a timebomb and needs replacement. main thing w manc is not to concede early on away games.

      2. SoOpa AeoN says:

        for every ospina save, i can sense a frown on szcesny’s face L()L

        1. KickAssFan says:

          Guys, what do you think? Crouch vs. Matesecker___ HeavyWeight Boxing fight!!! My money on Super Rhino.

          1. captinweestain says:

            Whos taller, reach advantage ?

          2. NY_Gunner says:

            I’d go with Mert. He’s good at “ducking” shots…LOL

          3. KickAssFan says:

            @NY, now that’s good thinking. He’d be introduced as “Mert de German Ducker”

        2. karonito says:

          There was a save ospina made,his only save of the match in fact,from Ireland’s shot,immediately ospina made the save I could sense a sarcastic smile from Szczesny’s face

    2. muffdiver says:

      very good performance, all played well, good selection from wenger,liked the formation. all round very happy 🙂 everyone can be very positive going to in to big game with man city !

      NO NEGATIVITY GUYS! we have city and spuds away next- lets go there confident!

      1. Grim Bligh says:

        One positive result against a mid table team will not change the global fact thatArsenal need to reinforce in defence.
        Come on let’s not forget that. I’ll

        1. dopplesoldner says:


          Q:on whether that influences transfers…
          A:Not so much because we were in the market anyway. Monreal and Debuchy can play centre back, but if Gibbs is not here Monreal cannot play centre back and if Debuchy is not here he cannot play centre back. This is a position where we are short.

          1. dopplesoldner says:

            He is going to buy a CB for sure. Just a matter of time.

    3. Mesut O-grillz says:

      Absolutely agree. Just wish we didn’t have to lose Debuchy, but Hector came in and played strong.

      1. gmv8 says:

        Pretty fed up that the Stoke Orc caused Debuchys injury after the ball had gone out of play. Should’ve at least been a yellow card.

    4. KickAssFan says:

      MOTM: Sanchez.

      1. medvet says:

        one mone time

      2. NY_Gunner says:

        Runners up: Le Coq & Santi…

        1. SoOpa AeoN says:

          thirdly, Smoker’s replacement L()L

        2. KickAssFan says:

          NY ma ma!!! Thank god the aliens finally let you go.

          Yeah, De Cock and Santii were both cool.

          1. NY_Gunner says:

            Was on “extended” NY hangout holiday. Caught up with the matches(damn)And almost got some time for thumpin with some Spuds supporters near Times Square…LOL

      3. djc says:

        Sanchez the nuts! personally I feel santi should have motm! He ran the midfield throughout! How many times do you see nzonzi get out played then subbed?
        Rosicky wasn’t far behind, forget his age that boy can run! and as for the coq? Now he’s home, he’s looking like what he promised to be………fingers crossed!
        Great performance, players back as well, top 3 easily with a good run, now its our time to turn it on…..!
        COYG 😉

      4. th14 says:

        Just imagine how many goals were gonna be banging in when Theo’s back inform, his movement is deadly and an inform theo would have netted 3 in the last 2 games. And then you have Electric Sanchez banging them in for fun already.
        And did anyone else notice Ozil, he’s bulked up quite abit, the extra mass makes you notice how tall he is, he’s 5ft11. Thought he was smaller till today.

        1. GOONSTER says:

          I was going to say that too. Looking at Ozil he is bulked up and looks well tall..

          1. th14 says:

            Bergkamp-esque physique now, hope it helps him handle the physical demands of the prem

    5. ENJ says:

      Honestly your right. No heart attacks, clean sheet and genuinely creative performance in the premier league. We had a great game but it’s time for us to kick on and prove we can do it away against the big yeams away starting next week against city.

      1. KickAssFan says:

        Yeah, let’s do it against the big yeams.

      2. RSH says:

        agree. When we run into teams above us in the table… those are where the problems are. its about time we start winning these games, but im never confident going into them.

      3. BarryL says:

        If we can get a result at Etihad and against Spuds, we then have a run of winnable games before Liver Birds and Chelski (both home) in April, and Man Gaal in May.
        This result could e a kick start for rest of season

    6. captinweestain says:

      Le coq looks impressive in dm role
      Alexis is a beast, what more can you say about him.
      Rosicky finding pockets as well as Santi
      Ox was a beast but needs to improve his shooting
      Bellerin looked composed.
      Saw a bit of ozil talents with that overhead flick pass.
      Theo should have scored 3 goals by now, but he’s rusty, still finding them areas though.

      Could have been 6 nil
      COYG confidence on the up.

      Debuchy dislocated shoulder, ref had a bit of a shite game, Giroud could’ve of had a peno.

      So many positives.

      1. KickAssFan says:

        Agreed, Captain Westham.

        1. captinweestain says:

          oiiiiiiiiiiiii don’t be naughty

          1. captinweestain says:

            Or i’ll change my name to KickAssFan’s lover

          2. KickAssFan says:

            Ahahaha! Lol!

    7. muda says:

      The win was so sweet, but more sweeter when you remember it was right in front of KING HENRY!

      1. KickAssFan says:

        Gee, the match was fixed to please the King.

    8. SoOpa AeoN says:

      up Next: MANCITY……….. Saving the beers for the aftermath

    9. vijaygunner says:

      why can’t we press like this against big clubs?!

      1. KickAssFan says:

        Dude, you just answered yourself: “Big clubs”

    10. gNgooner says:

      you know what annoys me the most about arsenal???
      knowing they can perform this way…why cant they do it regularly?,why couldnt we play like this at the britannia?…anyways,good performance all round…best performance of the season i think..

      1. rh0218 says:

        because of Flamini and Arteta… Also, Southhampton has won all matches against us this season.. wouldn’t be bad idea to steal schneiderlin from them. He is not cup tied and we are still on the run for the UCL.

    11. rh0218 says:

      yes, casually neither Flamini nor Arteta played… 3 goals, clean sheet…

  2. KickAssFan says:

    Thank God it was just a friendly.

  3. Mesut O-grillz says:

    Props to our defense + Ospina + Coq. Played outstanding

    1. muffdiver says:

      shezza looked bitter in his hood on the bench 🙂

      1. Mesut O-grillz says:

        probably because he hadn’t had a smoke in a while

      2. KickAssFan says:

        Yeah, he be like: “Damn! Where ma lighter be?

        1. Mesut O-grillz says:


    2. RSH says:

      Agree. Le Coq remains impressive. I really hope we stick with him. Even when he eventually has a bad game, he shouldnt be dropped. He’s been miles better than Flamini has all season.

    3. KickAssFan says:

      Yeah, very strong COck_leen.

  4. red14 says:

    Aléxis Sánchez

  5. Mick The Gooner says:

    Solid win, more like the Arsenal we all know.

    1. BarryL says:

      Could have had 4 or 5 to improve goal diff – but controlled game and welcome clean sheet!!
      Le Coq played well again (Will AW buy a DM in window or try and get Schneiderlein in summer?)
      Santi still on a roll of great form and another good one from Rosicky.
      Sanchez – well just Sanchez. Outstanding!!
      Only one negative was refereeing

      1. Budd says:

        Get the CB FIRST and if possible a DM. You all see today Mertesacker was shaky at times. Don’t know what’s wrong with him.

  6. alejandro1301 says:

    Alexis third best footballer in the world! Prove me wrong…

    1. medvet says:

      alexis has henry’s seal approval

  7. phil-thompsons-nose says:

    Balance from the start was very good..
    Great to see koscienly back and scoring..

    Take a bow sanchez… What- a- player we have!!!

  8. Mesut O-grillz says:

    There really isn’t anything to complain about, is there?

    1. GOONSTER says:

      Not in general but we seemed to get too cocky and over confident when we were cruising that we started causing our own problems defensively.. But apart from that everything was magnificent..

      1. Mesut O-grillz says:

        highly agree.

  9. reddb10 says:

    if we dont get any players at sanchez level he will not hang around for too long.
    regardless of the win Wenger Out

    1. captinweestain says:

      Go play fifa 15 and buy messi

    2. John Legend says:

      We are together on that, Bro. I dont want Arsene managing those players anymore by next season.

      1. Budd says:

        Then luckily you have nothing to say on it.

    3. jeff says:

      What the f#ck are you on about. Seriously moving to Arsenal was his best career move. He is a King here, his twice the player he was at Barca. I honestly don’t understand the poeple saying he is/will be unhappy. He’s playing the football of his life. With all the players that are returning we will only get better. There is a lot of potential in this team we just need defensive additions.

  10. 61 never again says:

    COYG great win in wenger we trust and to them fans who said they wanted us to lose cause of wenger fu#k you COYG

    1. NY_Gunner says:

      @61 never again

    2. KickAssFan says:

      Oh boy! Here they come. Hurrah!!! We are top of the table!!!

  11. dopplesoldner says:

    Another positive is players coming back at the right time. Believe it or not this is the first time Alexis, Ozil, Santi and Theo have been on the pitch at the same time!

  12. rpk says:

    Who is the MOTM apart from ALEXIS..!!

    1. muffdiver says:

      le cog again

      1. rpk says:

        Cazorla for me..

    2. Mesut O-grillz says:


  13. SoOpa AeoN says:

    Nice team selection…… Nice play……… Congrats to the team, credit to wenger for a nice selection(i believe he is due)….. But……. He still needs to take a bow soon , we all know why…. Or I’m i being wicked?

    1. muffdiver says:

      lets see what happens over rest of season 🙂

      dammit we needed today badly!

    2. RSH says:

      you’re not being wicked. Even i will give credit to Wenger. When i saw the team sheet it looked perfect. Subbed at the right times to. will just be happy today and avoid the manager debate 🙂

  14. Twig says:

    Oxlade-Chamberlain and Sanchez probably had their best games for Arsenal today.

    1. Mesut O-grillz says:

      Credit to Koscielny too.

  15. GOONSTER says:

    The Coq, Cazorla and Sanchez were absolutely magnificent..

    So I give the MOTM to Sanchez… He could have had like 6 assists today had the likes of Giroud, The Ox and Walcott taken those chances he created for them..

    Very good performance….

    But I think when we get too comfortable in a game we seem to just start being arrogant and then start

  16. GOONSTER says:

    The Coq, Cazorla and Sanchez were absolutely magnificent..

    So I give the MOTM to Sanchez… He could have had like 6 assists today had the likes of Giroud, The Ox and Walcott taken those chances he created for them..

    Very good performance….

    But I think when we get too comfortable in a game we seem to just start being arrogant and then start giving the ball away and take stupid defensive risks.

    But apart from that we were amazing today..

  17. Twig says:

    Walcott is still rusty. He has missed 3-4 open scoring chances that the Old Walcott would have converted. Someone get him his Newcastle boots!

  18. Greg says:

    Arsenal 3-0 stoke city thugs! Coyg!

  19. John Legend says:

    Alexis! Arsenal player of the season and EPL player of the season.

    1. Thando says:

      @jonh legend one sh*t hater from daily mail said it rooney,but no one has been a star like sanchez

      1. John Legend says:

        Rooney indeed! Am sure he wont have a voting slot. If Alexis is announced, he should campaign against it. I dont see any other person getting it with the way Sanchez is playing.

        1. KickAssFan says:

          Who’s talking about Shrek?

  20. ras911 says:

    Solid performance by everyone and only positive things to say! The more Coquelin plays the less i feel we need a top DM, he has simply been solid and made his presence known so far! His true test will however come away at City and Spuds. COYG!

    1. GOONSTER says:

      Not just him, the whole team have to be at 100% against City.. We have to defend as a unit.. City have some strong men in that midfield so we need more than just The Coq to get anything at City..

      1. captinweestain says:

        No Yaya so thats good, Theo if he plays will cause Mangala a lot of problems

    2. NY_Gunner says:

      I’ve said before that he is the “only” real DM we have. We still need a beast to partner him with. Playing against Wanyama showed us that…

      1. ras911 says:

        @NY gunner you’re absolutely right

      2. th14 says:

        Exactly it would be awsome to go to the ethiad with le coq besides a beast like wanyama, for me that’s the way to go against the big teams away.

  21. Thando says:

    Another cleansheet for ospina!now you are taking your chances i hope to see you again against mancity.the guy will be our real no.1 keeper mark my words there is no way back for scz

    1. muffdiver says:

      ospina will prove alot more over two next games-

      will get better idea against aguero kane an co

  22. Tidan2 says:

    Could have easily been 6-0 without Begovic and with Walcott and Ozil up to speed.

    Shows again that our real issue is not enough good defensive minded fighters (defenders and midfielders) for the top opposition and away games. (Coq played well yet again). We have scored in all but two matches this season and have had about 7 starters out for 5 weeks+.

    1. captinweestain says:

      It was Arsenal vs Bojan and Begovic

  23. SoOpa AeoN says:

    Looks like Mert ducked again….almost Led to the 1st stoke goaL…..thank God ospina was ere to clear that out :..phew!

    1. NY_Gunner says:

      @soopa aeon
      Sad. Especially when Kos took a cross to the chest and kept on rollin…

  24. gooner100 says:

    Same starting line up next week pls…with bellerin in if debuchy isn’t fit. Much more balanced. Solid looking defence with Le coq sitting in front and staying disciplined. COYG’s.

  25. mobaygunner says:

    Really impress by le cog and rosicky in middle…I think wenger will play either flame or rambo against city tho to get some protection which im ok with long as he plays with 2 wingers and santi in the middle…call me crazy..I love ozil I really do but tge way santi is playing right now ozil gonna have to work hard to get that spot..which is how it should be…no position guarantee…u think its by chance that chambo playing better since Walcott returned? ?..competition help everybody wrk hard and ull ger a chance..ask ospina…its ur choice if u wanna keep ur spot or not

  26. Greg says:

    Alexis sanchez! What a gem he is for arsenal fc! Coyg!

  27. muda says:

    The win was so sweet, but more sweeter when you remember it was right in front of KING HENRY!

  28. Thando says:

    Bellerin is having a great season

  29. Greg says:

    David ospina was very cool, calm, and commanding in goal today!

  30. captinweestain says:

    Gotta love wenger’s coy little smile when asked about Sanchez.

  31. Mick The Gooner says:

    City have Agüero and Kompany back from injury, just in time to face Arsenal.. Great…

    1. muffdiver says:

      good- we need to get tested properly

      1. reddb10 says:

        yes because we have never been tested before

    2. captinweestain says:

      We have RAMBO-THEO-OZIL Ant the red hot CHILLI ALEXIS.I
      truly believe anything can happen when he’s on the pitch, match winner/game changer.

  32. Greg says:

    David ospina for the number no 1 shirt! He is seriously threatening szczesny for it now!

  33. HA559 says:

    Its quite reassuring when uyou have a keeper that doesn’t dwell on the ball trying to be clever every time.

    We should’ve won 6-0

  34. Greg says:

    Francis coquelin was great today! Respect to him! Coyg!

  35. Greg says:

    Today showed santi cazorla and mesut ozil can play together as an attacking unit! Coyg!

  36. Greg says:

    Alexis sanchez arsenal’s “crown jewel”! Coyg!

  37. jib says:

    Le Coq can time a tackle! Aggressive but not reckless. I can see flashes of good vision for the long ball too, from today’s match as well as the hull match. Got some of the lads coming back too. I look forward to seeing, Walcott, ozil, Sanchez, and an in form santi playing together on the regular. Great to see little Mozart as always!

  38. Gunnerbongo says:

    Sanchez 12 goals 7 assists…who else in EPL?
    Le coq is improving tremoundsly.Good sunday

  39. HA559 says:

    I think we should start the same team again next weekend, maybe Debuchy is out but Bellerin played well. If you play with both Ozil and Walcott you will lose a bit of defensive insurance. Coquelin made so many tackles yet again, and I think he only misplaced two passes today, those were upfield. He can also pass forward, played great with Rosicky there as well, both can turn and pass forward. So that is a great and quick way to turn defence to attack when picking the ball up from deep.

    One thing though, we need to be more clinical nextweek. We wont get this many chances and we will need to score atleast 2 goals to win that game vs City maybe even a third.

  40. sam-afc says:

    It’s taken a while, but that’s the arsenal we all want to see!
    Every player had a good game today and worked hard.
    Nice to see Özil back and I’m sure Walcott will start scoring again.
    Alexis motm as usual 😉


  41. Mk2013 says:

    Well done guys. You put a smile on my face

  42. KickAssFan says:

    Ahahaha! Lol!

  43. fred cowardly says:


    More than happy

    Stoke are very thuggish so I was worried about 0-0 draw

    But Extremely happy with win
    long may it continue.
    Now let’s whoop City’s butt

    Jui Suis Charlie

  44. Mick The Gooner says:

    Wenger speaking in his post match interview sounds as if he has a centre back signing pretty much done – let’s hope it’s a good one.

    1. john0711 says:

      Let’s hopw it’s Howedes not Reid

  45. Lethal Prince 9 says:

    Who wants a draw for both Man Utd and Southampton ???

    Me for sure

    1. Tidan2 says:

      Completely satisfied with a win for Southampton as well though 😉 Southampton have been great but I expect them to eventually have a dip in form when we can strike

  46. NickTheYank says:

    Great result, only wish Debuchy hadn’t gone off injured. The most important thing today was solid performances from Coq & Bellerin. They both need to have good games for their minds to be right. At their age/experience in the first team each good game gives them more confidence in themselves and the team. Especially important with oil Citeh up next. With Ozil back (& hungry), Theo still finding his feet, Rambo as an option, etc we are finally looking like the team we can be. All we need is a CB, DM & a striker.

  47. Cashleycol says:

    The boy inside of me tells me, Southampton is going to score soon as I get substituted……

  48. MDOwn says:

    Excellent performance from everyone.

    Injury will probably force Wengers hand in the market. A CB is more important than a CDM at the moment though, with how well Coqueli has slotted in. Needs to work on his distribution, just pick the simple pass. If we have Chambers and Bellering as RB cover and Chambers a CDM CB cover a CB is probably needed. Or a versatile defender….

    1. Tidan2 says:

      I would argue that picking the simple pass is one of the reasons why he has been so good on his return; losing the ball in a DM’s position is a sure way of giving away easy goals.

      1. MDOwn says:

        There are a few too many cross field passes that go astray. or heavy through balls down the line.

  49. Ronny331 says:

    Great result, more than 1 goal and a clean sheet!
    OT: Saints players leave to come to us? not sure about that, they’re about to beat MU at Old trafford. Wanyamma and Schneiderlin again awesome.

  50. Ronny331 says:

    @mickthegooner. as long as the CB we buy isnt one of MU’s I’m happy!
    Jones and Smalling awful!

  51. Mick The Gooner says:

    1 point behind United. 3 points behind Southampton. After City it’s likely to be 4 and 6 points. Eek!

    1. Tidan2 says:

      don’t start gambling, likely at 20% odds is not going to win you money

  52. Bigvalbowski says:

    Wanyama and Morgan S are fantastic players

    1. muffdiver says:

      i agree. they are going nowhere.

      fantastic display from schneiderlin an wanyama. absolute defensive rocks.

      koeman a shoe in for manager of the year?

      1. Bigvalbowski says:

        Its extraordinary what SOTO have done, considering so many pundits declared there season to be a fight against relegation rather than a serious challenge for Champions league qualification.

        Tadic, Mane, Vic W, Morgan S, Cline, Fonte, Toby A(still cant believe Wenger didnt move for him) Forrester are all quality players and Pelle probably has the best hair in the EPL. Lol

        Would love to see the Saints in the top 4 come years end.

  53. Greg says:

    Ah rats! I wanted the game to draw!

    1. goonerretic says:

      This club sells most of its team,finds very good replacements,always seem to find the correct coach, has a great academy and supplies the EPL with excellent talent.i will not be complaining if SOTON gets CL football.that will be well deserved.

  54. john0711 says:

    With the Debuchy injury
    We need to sign Howedes, Schalke are about to sign Nastc from city , Howedes can play at CB and full back

    1. fred cowardly says:

      Howedes would be awesome

      Howedes is valued approximately what we paid for Chambers and Debuchy so he is NOT too expensive and also good quality.

      I would prefer Howedes to Van dijk, Reid and Schar

      Obviously, I’d prefer Hummels and Ramos too Howedes but no way Wenger will spend over £30 million for a defender.

  55. goonerretic says:

    Strange.People here are now glorifying Coquelin as if he is a different player after the loan spell.Coquelin is playing just like he was playing before he was loaned out.I always wondered why he wasnt played.I never understood why.i never recall him having a bad game.The only player that shone in the 8-2 defeat by Man U.
    However he was labeled rubbish here by just too many.I never understood why.Always good to know you arent missing something..

  56. fred cowardly says:

    Still waiting for our new quality defender. Would be nice to have him for Man Shitty

    Rumours in this order or quality:
    1. Ramos
    2. Hummels
    3. Schar
    4. Van Dijk
    5. Reid
    6. Perrin
    7. Beilik
    8. Smelling
    9. Squillaci
    10. Rio Ferdinand

    1. fred cowardly says:


      Forget Howedes at number 3

      1. Ramos
      2. Hummels
      3. Howedes
      Etc etc etc

  57. With this lineup WENGER start redeeming himself, he is not out of the woods yet, till we see some good signings he is not off the hook…More than ever he needs to reinforce our dfence with Debuchy out for a few weeks at least…Ozil, Walcott and Ramsey need to get in form ASAP, we cant depend on King Alexis for every game, the big teams are watching and will do everything in their power to neutralize him….on the striker Department we are still shaky, Giroud was horrid today, Goals should come from him we are blessed that our DEFENDERS, WINGERS AND MIDFIELDERS are doing the job….SOTON is looking strong hope they will vanish at the end of the season as Everton did last year, it will be challenging to reach that 4th place

  58. DANDY GUNNER says:

    Great result but I see it brought out all the in Wenger we Trust brigade.
    This result now goes on to strengthen Wengers resolve that he is right and there is no need to buy any quality players in this window. Arsenal need to strengthen their defence but watch Wenger he may buy a 18 year old for the future otherwise the no money will be spent.

  59. Zapperkid says:

    My man Coquelin did it again :D. Great game, team played great, could have added more goals but brilliant perfomance by our gunners 🙂 Ozil and Theo coming back, lets beat manshity next week !!!!

  60. jb29 says:

    We. Are. The. Guns.

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