Frustrating For Arsenal, But By No Means Terminal

Fighting on two other fronts means that this was no repeat of last year's defeat to Bayern for Arsenal, whilst Manuel Pellegrini's complaints should fall on deaf ears...

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hubie22 (Arsenal) says...

Well said slowgraffiti, I couldn't agree more. Obviously I am biased as an Arsenal fan, but whenever I see these similar situations in other matches, as a neutral I am moved to dispair as all too often a match is reduced to a one-sided training-match. Who wants to see that? By all means award a penalty in those situations, that would be perfectly fair. In fact it would make the game far more exciting for everyone, as opposed to what we have now.

Posted 2:31pm 21st February 2014

slowgraffiti says...

I do not see anything excellent or summative about the "excellent summation" article of the double punishment idea, unless it is excluding what some are calling triple punishment. There are finer lines that are being argued than the generic Twitter rage of no-red-card-with-a-penalty. City's double punishment was warranted. Arsenal's not so. As said in the article, if that's not the rule, then Messi can and will be chopped down every time he breaks free out of convenience. Dimichelis clearly has no chance at getting the ball as Messi is already in front of him and has touched the ball yards ahead. I see Szczeny's differently: a goalkeeper's foul is almost by default in the situation of a goal scoring opportunity, so goalkeepers must practically not foul at all, or be sent off? He legitimately comes for the ball which he is clearly in front of and in decent position to challenge for; though fractionally late, he makes no special movement to suggest he is trying to take the player, etc. Refereeing myself, I know that the argument that suggesting "deliberate" be part of a rule can be problematic because one cannot know the intentions of a player in certainty, but with each of these situations being so unique, it is possible to make some finer distinctions. Still too, I know referees who would not have sent off in that situation. [Though I'd argue against Robben's change being a clear goal scoring opportunity. Already having jumped up, he has mistouched the ball with the outside of foot and sent it out of his path of movement; he has to land and change trajectory, then accelerate enough to catch the ball which is bouncing away from goal and player with Sagna arriving immediately while Monreal is about to cover the goal.]

Posted 5:26am 21st February 2014

drgreggles says...

"Toni Kroos: A performance that proved he could single-handedly transform Manchester United's midfield..." No offence to Man U, but (other than huge wages) there is no reason why he would want to join them. If he chooses to leave Bayern (and I personally think the Man U link is there purely for negotiating purposes) then there will be a host of clubs in better shape who would want him.

Posted 10:37pm 20th February 2014

Jay_D says...

Couldn't agree more on the Arsenal points, though I'm not sure a player should be sent off for anything that wasn't cynical, dangerous or the result of two yellow cards.

Posted 5:38pm 20th February 2014

blankspace (Chelsea) says...

Thibaut Courtois deserves a mention in the winners list for those two extraordinary saves.

Posted 5:36pm 20th February 2014

JonnyNeale (Arsenal) says...

Matthew, it is not a 'trivial debate' and the so-called excellent summation is merely one opinion - and one which many bright minds disagree with. Every denied goalscoring opportunity is unique in nature. Forcing the referee to treat all of them with exactly the same inflexible, severe punishment is an insult to common-sense. It suggests that everything is either black or white. One of the worst effects of this is the total disempowerment of the referee to read each ┬┐denied goalscoring opportunity┬┐ on the nuanced shades of grey that make each situation different. The inherent inflexibility means that the referee has no choice but to frequently dish out punishments that are not commensurate to the foul in question. How many games have I seen ruined by this rule? If the rules were better, the Szcesney incident would have been a yellow card and a penalty. The keeper, I feel, was honest. It was not malice or dangerous ┬┐ merely mistimed. In the fast paced world of the professional game this is a commonplace occupational hazard of dealing with the incredibly fine margins that are often involved when making a tackle. SO a goalscoring opportunity was lost and it would have been regained. The keeper made a mistake and would have been appropriately punished. Instead the WHOLE TEAM was punished and the paying crowd were robbed of an enthralling contest on equal terms. In no way will I accept that is right. Naturally red cards could still be awarded but they should be reserved for: * When it occurs outside the box (as being awarded a free kick is scant reward when you have been denied a goalscoring opportunity) *For professional fouls *For dangerous/reckless challenges You speak as though the subject should be closed and that Mr Cornwall's versions of events are gospel. I find that a strangely dismissive and close-minded approach.

Posted 4:51pm 20th February 2014

bleublancrouge (Chelsea) says...

I think that we can all agree that "winner" Yaya Sanogo has already earned the moniker "Sanogol" and should henceforth be referred to as such (for reasons very different than Batistuta or Trezeguet before him).

Posted 4:43pm 20th February 2014

leopolddoom (Manchester United) says...

Sanogo could have been sent off

Posted 4:33pm 20th February 2014

chopper says...

Citeh will be back as 3rd seeds and will either fail to get out of their group once more or fail to get past the last 16 again and again and again... Waste of money much?

Posted 4:18pm 20th February 2014

bobsy (Liverpool) says...

They must be so bored of Jose Mourinho - this could be said for anyone. except the oi oi chelsea fans obviously

Posted 4:06pm 20th February 2014

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