Why Anthony Taylor is the key man for Arsenal at Stoke

The Arsenal boss has played down the comments by Ryan Shawcross ahead of Arsenal heading to the cauldron of the Britannia Stadium to face Stoke City in the Premier League tomorrow. The bug Stoke defender does not seem too keen on trying to forget his spat with Arsenal fans and players that began with his horror tackle which nearly ended the career of Aaron Ramsey.

Instead, Shawcross tried to up the ante by warning the Gunners that we face what he calls a `tasty` encounter, according to a report in The Mirror. A thinly veiled threat that we can expect more rough treatment from the Stoke players, just as their midfield enforcer Steven N’Zonzi made no secret of what their tactics against Arsenal will be.

N’Zonzi said, “We know Arsenal play good football but it gets harder for them when you start kicking them a little bit.

“They don’t like it but we’ll keep doing it.”

Football is a man’s game and is not a non-contact sport, at least not yet, but kicking players on purpose is supposed to be against the laws of the game. I’m not sure that anyone likes it really Steven, but as long as the referee does his job then it should not matter unless we get another player put in hospital. Arsenal are a tougher nut to crack these days.

That is why I am saying that tomorrow’s referee Anthony Taylor could be the key man for Arsenal tomorrow. If he let’s Stoke get away with their rough tactics it could really influence the game and encourage them to foul us more and more.

But if he is aware of the comments from the Stoke players, which he should be, then he should be ready to produce an early yellow card or to to stamp it out. And that will allow us to play the kind of football that we are good at and that Stoke will struggle to handle. Unfortunately I am not convinced that Taylor is up to the job.

He was the official for Stoke’s first home game of the season and he produced just three cards, all for the visiting side Aston Villa. He is also the ref that wrongly awarded a penalty and then sent off Koscielny in our opening day defeat by Villa last season. He was dropped for the next round of EPL games after that shocker. Let’s hope he has a better day tomorrow.

Tags N'Zonzi Ramsey Shawcross


  1. BigWilli says:

    an article that explains why diaby will probably get a new deal would be interesting.
    i just dont see how he deserves that… we lost so many good players but we cant get rid of diaby?

    i like him but he does barely play 2 full games a season. so why the fuk wenger wants him to stay?

    1. Thando says:

      The guy is a waste of space,it time we move @big willi

    2. mobaygunner says:

      If diaby will take a pay as u play deal im allfor it and as long as we still get a new dm that we badly need…I know he’s always Ij but the boy is so young and I still remember when he was fully fit he was a manster…I guess wenger is just praying like me that he’ll get bk…just give me 20 hames this season diaby..20 plzzz

    3. Budd says:

      I am a bug fan of Diaby but I have to admit I have lost interest in whether he will be fit or not in the following weeks. Seriously, field him against (say) Liverpool and if he at least shows that glimpse of a midfield commander then give him a new contract. If not, we are better of with Flamini. Not to mention Chambers.

  2. Tidan2 says:

    I’m very worried about this match; we have plenty of injuries, we have a terrible away record against them, this is the third match in a week, stoke use physicality instead of skill AND bloody Anthony Taylor still hasn’t been fired. It has been statistically proven that Anthony Taylor is the worst referee in the PL and yet apparently their is no way to hold referee’s accountable for their bad decisions.

  3. Twig says:

    I’m very calm about tomorrow. I expect Santi, Olivier and Alexis to work their magic and bring the 3 pts home.

    1. Sumo says:

      Hey Twig nice article about Titi.
      But don’t you think there is a difference between Drogbas playing style and Henrys?
      I mean Henry based his Arsenal game on blistering pace and technically, where as Drogba based his on strength. That’s why Drogba is seamlessly slotting in the brute Chelsea side.

      Where as if Thierry Henry comes in, he lost his pace and he will struggle a bit and seeing Arsenal fans(current disgruntled ones), i am sure a run of few poor performances and fans will strart to get on his back.

      But yes I agree, I would love to see him come back and win the UCL/or FA Cup(since you mentioned it) with us. But the decision should be rational not emotional.

      P.S.- Sorry for replying on this thread.

      1. Twig says:

        Thanks mate.

        Well, he’ll be coming as a mentor/player and he won’t be playing 20 games or something. I wasn’t looking at it purely from the sporting perspective but from the psychological and feel-good effect it would have on the squad as well. I believe it will also bond new players like Sanchez and Ozil to the club more when they see the reception Titi gets.

        He might have lost some of his pace but he has adapted his game. He still hasn’t lost his positioning and calmness in front of goal. Ronaldo and Giggs were all players that relied on their pace but they still did well later in their careers when that pace was gone.

        Who would you rather a chance in the 92nd minute against Chelsea while the game is still 0-0 to fall to? Henry or Sanogo? Check out his MLS games, the man still knows where the net is. He has plundered 50+ goals for NYRB for a good reason.

  4. Sumo says:

    There is a difference between Pulis Stoke and Hughes Stoke. Last year we beat them 3-1 at home and lost by a penalty in the away fixture.

    But than also I am quite nervous about this game. We should get the 3 points but it will be tuff. Giroud to skore?

  5. kamn288 says:

    i am really worried alexis is being pushed to the limits and Wenger is happy to let it roll on and by the statements arsene has laid the whole foundations objectives on one man and by the looks of it no arsenal player till now have done what alexis doing against opposition and i beg the manager to not play him against Stoke and please let this one go cause they will do anything illegally to foul us and play a cheap tactic against us.

    1. Thando says:

      Sanchez in the red zone he can get injured anytime and wenger said it but he seems like he is waiting for a guy to get injured so he can rest

      1. almostawinner says:

        when zee player gets injured, that is when i rest zem.

  6. Trudeau says:

    I hate this fixture. From the boos that Ramsey still gets for having the audacity to break his leg at the Brittania to our dismal record there. N’Zonzi’s comments are daft, maybe mitigated by English not being his first language, and should make Taylor a bit more attentive than usual.

  7. Johannesburgunner says:

    Totally disagree. Taylor is going to be the extra man for that Rugby team if evidence of his officiating in last seasons opener with Aston Villa is anything to go by. This referee will give Stoke a license to hurt us, which is their intention judging from the threats being sprouted by their players. Last week, Phil Hughes passed away from an aggessive delivery bowled to him, and the world media, fellow sportsmen including Abbot the bowler and fans accross the globe were horrified at this loss of life.It is shocking that soccer players threaten to become physical without considering that they could destroy a talented players career. This is criminal, and any referee who allows such behaviour is complicit in the attack on the player. We all know what happened to Ramsey, and once again we getting threatened with physical ‘tasty’ treats from these Stoke players. And the media are encouraging this all the way with reference to Arsenal’s soft belly.
    Wenger on the other hand should be preparing his players not to play into the hands of a referee who is going to make a positive result for us difficult, and encourage his players not to fear the physical threats from Stoke.Instead he is talking about Stoke being a difficult team to beat, as if throwing in the towel already. I fear that come the end of the game, the referee and Stokes tactics will be under scrutiny from all of us, except our critics , the media and rival fans. I hope I am proved wrong.

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