Stoke v Arsenal review – Point puts Gunners top of EPL

It took a while for this game to get going, with Arsenal and Stoke both matching each other and cancelling each other out in the first half. That was much better than the same fixture last season when the Gunners were completely blown away by the home side in the first half an hour.

It was strongly contested from both teams without there being too many real chances for either side. Arsenal just edged the first half in terms of shots on target but we cannot really say we deserved the lead. Stoke came out with real purpose after the break but the Gunners rallied and probably just about edged the second half as well.

Both Petr Cech and Jack Butland mad a few good saves over the course of the game and we survived a late scare with a clearance off the line but all in all I think a draw was a fair result and although it would have been great to take all three points, the result does take Arsenal back above Man City and Leicester City into top spot.

And considering that we were without first choice players like Cazorla, Coquelin, Alexis and Ozil, along with the very good form Stoke are in I reckon we should be reasonably satisfied.


  1. ranger says:

    We’ve lost 4 points in last 2 games. THAT iS BAD!
    welcome in el neney but where on facebook post or twitter
    Cech saved us
    without ozil there is no creativity in team
    Alexis pls come back soon
    iwobi played better then walcot

    1. Aggelos says:

      No Ozil, no Cazorla, no Rosicky = no creativity.

      1. muffdiver says:

        our english core…
        has the durability of a marshmallow flump
        the technicality of a sheet of cardboard

        theo is on 140 a week- for what?!
        yeah you can run very fast- so can i when being chased by the feds
        odd goal here an there- you make all this fuss about contract talks – like your thierry henry an can go anywhere- and what!!!

        ox isnt ready- but hes still young- not a first team player-



        1. muffdiver says:

          is it just me or does anautovic look like tom hardy
          swear i saw bane upfront – i was like ..thought u couldnt breath without the mask big guy#?

        2. ranger says:

          Absolutely right but who can understand these thing to Uncle wenger he is busy with his if we talk about new players he says welbeck is coming. Could someone tells wenger that he did not play a single game for last 10 months how could we except that he will impact
          A 19 year boy played better then theo and ox

          1. almostawinner says:

            we couldve done w a new striker signing in summer (esp since wenger knew welbeck would be out). it really seems to me at times that wenger doesnt want to (or know how) to try harder – to just do everything in his power to assure we win PL. he doesnt seem too put out when we lose. i cant imagine anyone else sitting on a pot of 200M when we always come up a bit short of winning PL. maybe its all a business to him? maybe he’s so deluded he thinks arteta/flam can fill in for coq? but eventually he realized they cannot and had to buy elneny. why couldnt he have done that in the summer??? i just dont get what wenger sees.

    2. ThirdManJW says:


      Couldn’t agree more. How Walcott is on 140k a week is beyond me, he’s been poor almost all season! I’d love to see more of Iwobi, but I guess that’ll only happen if we get more injuries. As we already know, Wenger never picks a team based on form.

      I’m not even going to say Ramsey was trash today, that was just one of his standard performances. But to be fair, most of the team were awful today.

      1. ranger says:

        Mr wenger Transfer window still open. u can buy the title for Fans.We are waiting for last 12 years this year we have the best chance pls pls pls do not blow away .

        1. muffdiver says:

          are u high on ur grandmothers supply?!!

          wenger will not spend cash

          1. ranger says:

            no but i want to see my arsenal high where no one reach

        2. GoonerG1 says:

          How many impact players have been signed this window In all of Europe? None. You are an idiot if you believe Wenger can buy a title this January.

          1. kenyanfan says:

            if it wasn’t for this man whom Chelsea donated to us….lol..poor arsenal

          2. arsenalfan1 says:

            Are you Arsene Wenger in disguise?

    3. seancali says:

      When are ozil and Sanchez coming back??any new news??we are missing them badly. We need both for the Chelsea game

      1. ButtFlaps says:

        MR Wenger said in pots match interview they both to return NEXT WEEK!!!

      2. Fatboy Gooney says:

        Wenger said that he hopes that they will be ready for the Chelsea game. ….. ?…. Yeah, exactly. … he HOPES!
        …. what an Absolute Clueless muppet…. I remember hearing him say that Sanchez will be ready for the Man City game ?… to be fair .. he didn’t say which one… maybe he meant the away game!

        Ozil has a inflammation in his foot, but wenger didn’t mention why and Sanchez is 95% ready but if he has a Danny Setbeck he could be out for 3 month’s ? and thats the reason why wenger didn’t risk Sanchez today!

        Now what kind of bull? is that?
        Obviously Sanchez’s injury was a lot worse than we thought.

    4. Godswill says:

      Which teams did we play against? Scrap? When you saw the line up you screamed that we were going to lose. Now you are talking about losing points. How many big teams have gone there recently and left with something? I tell you, we’ll just be scrapping and crossed the line come may.

    5. galaxygooner says:

      After Cech, I think flamini did well.It says a lot if flamini and Campbell have better ball distribution than ramsey.
      For me, he will never be a CM.At best a supporting or decoy striker. Ramsey had wilshere simply do not have the football brain or street smart to be the central nervous system of a team playing at arsenal’s level.
      Giroud also showed why the alternative type of striker is needed. Twice, he had opportunities to create half a chance and get a shot off. Twice he made those silly flicks to the opposition.
      Mertesacker shrinks into a wimp when and where he should big.
      Against Liverpool, instead of throwing himself at the ball, he shrank and dodged the point blank shot by Allen.

      1. GoonerLad says:

        Typical typical Ramey hate, what has he done to piss you off ? He did what most of you haters begged for, he stayed disciplined. But somehow it’s his fault when we don’t win a game ? Chamberlain, Walcott and Flamini were the poor ones today and NOT our no16. Ox and Flam couldn’t even complete a pass,Walcott was wasteful with the chances he was given, but somehow you have to blame Ramsey huh ? Gtfo out of here with that nonsense logic.

    6. Dawa says:

      Team selection was poor. Theo, Flamin & Ox should not have been in the first team.

      1. summerbreez says:

        The selection was good we needed the minimum which was a point we achieved that i think it was a good defensive encounter iuobi introduction was better than….. arteta many players today did very good we have to take the positives

  2. Aggelos says:

    This game brought back memories. Possession and a lot of passes with no end product. Cech MotM for me.

    1. vijaygunner says:

      lol what passes?

      1. Aggelos says:

        +1 :’)

        1. seancali says:

          No ozil that was the last thing we needed today. It hurt us badly. We were missing his creativity, couple of world class saves from both keepers. Stoke is not an easy place to take all 3 points and with our injury crisis I would take the point and return to top of the table. We are on top and that’s all we need to do.keep staying top. Next 2 home games are vital. Expecting full 6 points from those matches. As for today goes glad to take a point

          1. muffdiver says:

            your ‘expecting’ 6 points

            i expect a bj before breakfast everyday, but apparently 3 months into our relationship – the missus thinks thats too much

          2. seancali says:

            Yes. It’s not a big thing to ask for. Beating Chelsea and Southampton at home should be doable. If we win those matches I would say we are title favourites

          3. Wonder says:

            we are on top for now as we will never beat Chelsea even at home! Once City is on top thats it, we have to kiss this tittle goodbye. Surely its embarrassing to make defensive substitutions fighting for a draw with Stoke!

    2. Gooneristic Truth says:

      Big Pete… all day long!

  3. NY_Gunner says:

    As long as we didn’t lose and remain top of the heap…I’ll take that.

    1. muffdiver says:

      if u didnt take that ..then what lol?

      hot tub time machine back to the suarez deal?

      1. NY_Gunner says:

        Str8 Up…

  4. Greg says:

    Petr cech made some great crucial saves today!

  5. vish says:

    If we win the title this season somehow, it’s SOLELY because of Cech. He saves us in games like these.
    Back in the days Wojeich and Ospina used to concede those.

  6. Invincibles49 says:

    Can’t believe a team supposedly challenging for PL title is relieved to have 0-0 draw and that too feels like undeserved point.

    Walcott and Ox: Both sum what is wrong with our whole so called youth development system. Walcott just wants to score goals without contributing anything. And Ox. My god. What is he still doing in the Premier league i dont know. We can find far better players than him in the second division.

    Arsenal youth= Shame: Its evident we are nothing without our blockbusters signings of Sanchez, Ozil and Cech. Such a great testament to the team that Wenger has actually built through youth development. No creativity and no passion. Just getting schooled by a bunch of rugby players.

    Substitution. Wenger with his typical handbook 70 min subs. That is why he will never be a winner. If he had guts he would have make the subs around half time only or around 60 min. Why not throw in Elneny for Ox. Forget his familiarity with PL,he would have done tons better than the English talents out there. And then he wakes up after 90 in again and brings in defensive Chambers while announcing out there that he is more than content with 1 point. Just WOWW!!!

    Giroud: His miss probably cost us 3 points. A stern reminder that he cant make somthing out of nothing. He needs space and tap ins to score and in a tight match like when everyone is been so poor, the chance looks so important in retrospect.

    Cech: You are the only one worthy of this club. Thank you for keeping the ray of light alive which i believe is not going to matter in the end.

    Injury Updates: What has happened with Sanchez? For a manager who teaches ethics and what not, his lies regarding the injury updates of Sanchez is cheating the fans. Regarding Ozil, i am not sure if it is short term.

    Title Challenge: I have a bad feeling about this title challenge. City has Aguero firing, Silva is fit and Kompany will be back. 3 points goal difference is nothing for them. Nothing!!

    Such a bad performance. Shambolic and utter disgrace. All for playing a technical style of football. We are hanging out there by the thread and typical Arsenal curse of chocking is coming back.

    1. NY_Gunner says:

      Breathe dude…

      1. Invincibles49 says:

        Yup. Since we played breathless football tonight, i do need that now.

        1. muffdiver says:

          ooooh – decent comeback

          fair play…ur biscuit is in the post

          1. Invincibles49 says:

            I will be more than happy to take it. Just like the 1 point tonight.

    2. GoonerG1 says:

      Giroud did not miss. Great goal keeping.

      1. galaxygooner says:

        He missed.
        The far post was wide open for him to pass the ball.
        Not shoots but a well placed pass.

      2. Dawa says:

        He did miss, man. That should`ve been in. He connected the ball without thinking.

        1. almostawinner says:

          giroud’s processor isnt as fast as aguero or RVP or WC strikers. they have time to plan and in that situation, they do something other than shooting straight forward.

    3. Afc 92 says:

      Arsenal will not win the prem. They have been caught out and I honestly can not see us winning prem. Arsenal will get top 4 and maybe a FA cup but we do not deserve prem in this fashion

  7. Sam, need a striker says:

    iwobi >> Walcott
    iwobi >>> Ox
    Sh#t >>>>>> Flamini
    Cech and Bellerin are MOM

  8. Greg says:

    Great workrate again from Joel Campbell!

    1. Colin says:

      I had to listen to the match, but it did seem that it was Joel and Bellerin on the right causing the most threat. Credit to Monreal too. Top class left back.

  9. McGUNNER says:

    Typical game at stoke dull and boring the only surprising thing is they didn’t mame any of our players..

  10. PaddyGooner says:

    A foot injury for Mesut. That could be anything. Surely 99% of a footballers injuries are foot related? When is he back. We need him and Alexis next week.

    1. Invincibles49 says:

      Well Wenger says it short term.Which means he might be back Feb end.

      1. muffdiver says:



        IM MAD LOL

      2. RSH says:

        Feb. end is optimistic. We’ll see him April.

        1. muffdiver says:

          and i will see you…

          I.N H.E.L.L

  11. juhislihis says:

    8 points from the last 6 away games.. Those were against Stoke, Liverpool, Aston Villa, Southampton, Norwich and WBA.

    So that’s 8 points from teams who are currently 7th, 9th, 10th, 13th, 16th and 20th.

    And we are yet to play away the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th..

    We can bury our title chances already with displays like this. Unless something drastic happens, we can start dreaming about next season.

    1. juhislihis says:

      Sorry 6 POINTS IN 6 MATCHES.*

      1. muffdiver says:

        ur maths is like theos performance.


        1. juhislihis says:

          I’m already a beat dog so why are you adding insult to injury McMuffinnnnnnnnnnn

    2. Godswill says:

      But can you look at your team sheet and say it’s your best line up? Football is not that your mathematics. For instance, we beat Man u 3-0 but Sunderland 2-0.

      1. juhislihis says:


        So what you are saying is, playing away is no different than playing at home?

    3. jonestown1 says:

      6 points is poor but win your home games and draw away is the standard recipe for the title. Man City last 7 away games : 5 points!! Lot of chat about our difficult away fixtures but 9 of City’s remaining 16 games are away – we have only 7. Who knows what Leicester will do but personally I have my eye on City and not Leicester. Not great last few results but not yet wrist slitting time just yet. A result against Chelsea, rest a few for FA cup and we COULD have close to a full squad available in a few weeks for the run in.

      1. ahappygunner says:

        Well said

    4. jonestown1 says:

      and Man City have 6 points from last 7 away games. Tough, tough league this year.

  12. Aggelos says:

    Chamberlain can’t pass to save his life.

    1. juhislihis says:

      He can’t do anything to save his life so it baffles me how he’s still up and running

    2. Dawa says:

      Ox almost made me break my TV.

  13. antiwenger says:

    it would be a crime if Walcott started the next game

    1. muffdiver says:

      like we have a choice

      1. Godswill says:

        Yes. If Sanchez will be back, Walcott should give way. Campbel >>>>> Walcott so should keep his place.

        1. GoonerLad says:

          Exactly, I’ve been saying it for a while, Walcott has a good game for every 10 poor ones. He should stay on the bench

  14. Jim A says:

    That ball was moving funny. It looked warped to me. Everyone’s first touch was high off the shin.

    1. muffdiver says:

      i told you jim …those mushrooms were for AFTER the game

  15. RWRW says:

    Ox really hasn’t pushed on whatsoever. Quite worried for him. To just have Iwobi on the bench is just not good enough!!!

    1. jonestown1 says:

      Agree on Ox but to say “Iwobi on the bench is just not good enough” makes me wonder how many squad members some of you guys want in our PL roster – if you have Ozil, Sanchez, Rosicky, Wilshere, Welbeck, Carzorla and Coquelin injured the bench is always gonna look thin. Btw – Iwobi looked one of our more assured players on the pitch.

  16. BUR says:

    Look what we have left from all the injuries. ……… nothing. Poor to many loose passes.

  17. WOS says:

    No mess against chelsea or say good bye to epl
    Don’t get to much paniced
    Arsenal played today without 4 of our starters in the front 6
    Waiting for alexis,cazorla,coquelin and ozil

    1. RSH says:

      more disappointed nobody decided to step up today. Ox needed a huge performance and was only better than Walcott today.

      1. muffdiver says:

        saying he was better than walcott is like saying to me ..

        well done for going to the bathroom on your own

        1. Fatboy Gooney says:

          Exactly. .. . So your gonna have to Wait for your …
          WELL DONE SON!!!

  18. Colin says:

    To be honest, I’m glad to have the point from this game, but we must beat Chelsea now to prove our title credentials.

  19. Greg says:

    Monreal had a good game today, consistent display at the back once again!

  20. RSH says:

    Oxlade-Chamberlain needs to drop to U-21 level because apparently he can’t pass anymore and has zero decision making skills, worse than Ramsey’s. No Ozil, no party because our midfield was clueless the entire match. Walcott again is a one trick pony and even when he got into the box he took forever to actually shoot the ball. Giroud was average today, maybe he should’ve scored, but he honestly only had one good chance. There was also the header but that was more down to Butland. Cech saved us massively and we should be lucky to have a point. But at the same time I’m disappointed big time. It’s hard to believe this team realizes they are challenging for the title because half the time it doesn’t look like it.

  21. Invincibles49 says:

    How much i wish that Maourinho was still the manager at Chelsea at least till the Arsenal game.

    1. muffdiver says:

      what so he could mastermind yet another arsenal defeat thru costa cheating terry bullying the ref and hazard diving for a penalty


  22. zulazlykamari says:

    england players have no brain.

    1. RSH says:

      sad truth. Not one English player has been impressive. If anything they have all gotten worse.

      1. muffdiver says:

        gibbs and theo as countless people have said have the tools- but never had the brain-

        i still believe in ox- not in first team right now obv lol

        1. RSH says:

          I don’t see what makes Ox different. Yeah, he’s a better dribbler but his decision making is just as poor. I don’t know where this English mentality comes to just run forward like a headless chicken. Wilshere is by far the most intelligent of our Englishmen but he’s out injured 90% of the time.

  23. BUR says:

    That Smicheal talks the biggest load of rubbish then followed by Carragher. I am not renewing sky fees next year.

    Top of the league boys give us a bit of credit.

  24. Greg says:

    Top of the pile on goal difference i’ll take it! Although I wanted the 3 points, if this was the last deciding game of the season to crown the EPL champions, we would have won the league!

  25. Robin Vanpayslip says:

    Ox did his best to try and get featured on a ‘should’ve gone to spec savers’ advert……

  26. ali davidson says:

    oh come on…a boring game like i watched bottom team played like chelsea…hahaha…please,what is walcott doing in that game? i dun think he deserves the 1st eleven in arsenal, all he did just run with the ball and lost it, i think iwobi is a lot better than him in distributing the ball, it doesnt mean i hate walcott, but i mean there are many player better than him that deserved the 1st e…no ozil no creativity at all, thanks to cech that always saved the team or if not, it will cost us 3 points, cech MOTM…just waiting for sanchez to replace walcott or just replace walcott with iwobi…please wengerrrr!!!!

  27. Ras says:

    piss poor. Walcot missing again, too many stray passes, another slow start. well done keeper you’ve got us a point today

  28. JAmerican says:

    Iwobi for Walcott next game.
    We need a Podolski replacement.
    Flamini is still reckless.
    Cech earned us a point.
    Chamberlain and Walcott on the field is a crime.
    Must beat Chelsea.
    Want to see Elneny.
    I miss Alexis, Ozil, Cazorla and Coquelin.

    1. JAmerican says:

      Oh yeah and Campbell is officially a starter on the RW.

  29. Ks-Gunner says:

    The gunners are like gunns with low ammo. The money is there to be spend, so f…ing spend it !!1

  30. unjonzeable says:

    Chamberlain has been nothing but shambolic so far this season……don’t know when he’s gonna fulfil the so called ‘potential’ in him

    Meanwhile…Campbell continues to impress….

    Campbell and Cech for MotM

  31. Dennis says:

    Walcott is DONE! He’s regressed so badly i don’t we should stick with him anymore and when sanchez comes back next week Walcott should come off the bench. Same with OX who looks lost, unsure and has not settled into this team. Next week i would like to see Elnenny, Ozil and Sanchez inserted into the line up

  32. lalitsyal says:

    Cech MOTM
    Montreal – A hats off performance
    Bellerin was also good
    Iwobi impressed a lot,

    Walcott was poor
    So was OX…….just doesn’t fit in the midfield ( poor passing, too much ball holding, just not doing wonders for himself, need to b sent on loan)

    1 point is far better when you consider our recent track record at stoke, but much happier that all our players came out alive of that hostile place……!!

  33. antiwenger says:

    it is crystal clear that wenger isn’t winning another title at Arsenal. We should start worrying about the top four now coz whilst our rivals are improving, we are on a steady decline

  34. goonerboy says:

    Some players suffer and work hard for the team(Ozil, sanchez,monrealn Bellerin, campbell, Giroud) while some just stroll on the pitch(walcott, ox,) and some are always in the treatment room yet they are handsomely paid….
    Wenger makes Ozil and sanchez to work for nothing, always leaving the team in a ‘nearly’ postion…
    That’s why some players leave..for God’s sake invest in the team and complete it, make it balanced…if you are still optimistic about winning the title,you are very strong…

  35. Twig says:

    1. OX looked lost in the Ozil role
    2. Walcott is wasted on the left. Play him either as CF or on the RW
    3. Bellerin needs to work on his crossing, good game though
    4. Monreal and Cech MOTM for me
    5. We need a STRIKER!

    1. arsenalfan1 says:

      Ox was lost in the Ozil role alright…but not as lost as the manager who put him there!

  36. Wayne Barker says:

    Point away to stoke is far from bad but problem is our team’s mentality is bad. How can we be contented for a draw after letting liverpool equalise just 3 days ago.Sorry to say but arsenal are hardly playing like a champion team. Past winners used to get these results and used to dominate. I am worried the title heat is slowly getting onto Wenger and the boys. Heck even Ranieri is not too bothered but it seems wenger is feeling the heat. Still 16 games to go and this surely doesnt look good.


    1. NY_Gunner says:

      @Arsenal FC the best
      Guess he figured that without “Le Coq” the balls are useless…

    2. GoonerLad says:


  38. antiwenger says:

    Next game Chelsea. Judging by the lies wenger has been spewing, I don’t expect ozil and alexis to be available for that game.Alexis clearly has a serious injury but wenger won’t say it to avoid the pressure of signing a forward this window just as he did with welbeck.Our injury crisis should be easing but it’s only getting worse,yet instead of taking advantage of the transfer window, we are just shooting ourselves on the foot

  39. JJT says:

    Mesut Ozil on facebook – “Balboa and me watching today’s match against Stoke! Hopefully I’ll be back well for the next match. But for now:

    Hopefully he will be back for Chelsea!

  40. georgie b says:

    Ox and Theo can be absolutely brilliant or crap.

  41. john0711 says:

    i went to the game today, huge respect fro the Arsenal away fans they outside the Arsenal home fans

    Players scores
    Chech 8.5 top saves when needed
    Monreal 7 good steady game as always
    Mert 6 did ok
    The boss 6 looked tired
    Bel 7.5 good game needs work on crossing
    Walcot 5 did less than iwobi
    Cmpbell 7.5 worked hard, in front of ox and walcott anyway
    Flamini 7 steady
    Ox 4 poor all game not a clue how he gets a game
    Ramsey 5 very selfish player, if barca pay 50m take it and sigh Barkley for 35
    Giroud 6.5 missed very good chance and doesn’t hold the ball up at important times but had an ok performance
    Iwobi 7 did more than walcott in 15 mins
    Chambers not on long enough

    if ozil is inj forget the league

    1. GoonerLad says:

      What selfishness ? Ramsey had no one to pass to in midfield, most of the players were too lazy to form any sort of movement around the ball. On top of that he remained disciplined and we didn’t concede. Wasn’t that what you wanted ? Weren’t most of you complaining he bombs forward even though he creates countless goal chances when he does ?

      1. john0711 says:

        ramsey was in front of giroud way to much and left flamnini alone

  42. vinie2000 says:

    2 points from 6? you are kidding me? talking garbage that welbeck is back soon and there is no need for striker? then when the window closes will come with same excuses.Alexis recovery is taking longer so is Danny but we were active searching but no one special out here to fil those gaps..bla..bla..and title gone then THE DOOR IS OPEN FOR YOU TO GO as we never have another chance to win this EPL.I had enough

    1. ArseOverTit says:

      Yeh wellbeck the prolific is to return and save us. Get a frigging grip on reality Arsene!, perlease!

  43. Fatboy Gooney says:

    Another point won by Cech.

    Meanwhile Wenger is skimping on the transfer’s again…
    Rumour has it that the deluded one has paid the Physio Room. Com £10,000 to take 99% of our injured player’s of their site, until the end of January! ??

  44. DANDY GUNNER says:

    If Wenger thinks Arsenal can win the Premership with results like this.
    2 points from 6 and Chelsea to come next week. Wenger is not in the market
    for a Striker because Welbeck is on the way back. It will take weeks before
    he is up to speed and Arsenal haven’t got that Luxury. Arsenal need
    a TOP class Striker now if they are going to win the Premiership.

  45. gmv8 says:

    There were a few things which were consistent through the game

    – How good Cech was, and how I think it is mostly through his effort that we are still at the top.
    – How we allowed Stoke acres of space, never closing down, while conversely they allowed us very little.
    – How poor our passing was, giving the ball away cheaply having spent so much effort to get it in the first place.
    – How the referee didn’t clamp down on Stoke fouling, often not giving a foul at all, when in actual fact a lot of Stoke fouling was not accidental but ‘professional’ and deserved a yellow card. Conversely, Arsenal players didn’t even touch Stoke players, but they went down and were given a foul. Campbell and Giroud took a beating, but nothing awarded by the ref.

    We probably didn’t deserve the win, we didn’t put the effort in, our pinpoint passers – Ozil, Cazorla et al were missing and it showed.

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