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A weird game of two halves. Weird because in the first half we were dominant and managed to go behind. In the second half against ten men we looked disjointed.
Some people will think we couldn’t beat the low block and they’re right but we made our own problems. Mané, Robertson and Jota all gave the ball away and broke our fluidity too often.
It’s even more odd because it feels like two points dropped despite the fact we were never ahead. Mourinho has proven in the past that top players can park the bus and be extremely resilient but to Tuchel’s credit he showed a lot of aggression before the lost a man and still had their moments.
Lukaku was horrendous today. It was comforting they withdrew Havertz and left him on because he could barely control the ball and gave us close to zero trouble in both halves. On that evidence he will not be a 100m Pound player by a long stretch.
Liverpool vs Chelsea thoughts
Billed as an early title decider, ruined by one official who seemingly each week makes a poor decision in a game, this won’t be the first game that Anthony Taylor has ruined, certainly won’t be the last either, especially after his shambolic performance in the FA Cup final a few years ago, it isn’t just Chelsea games, there is no “why always us? Mentality from myself, I remember a game involving Leeds in the FA Cup where he was just poor overall and I’m sure it must make the majority of fans groan when they see his name officiating their sides game, do others agree or is there a referee that makes you sigh louder?
Anyway less about the officiating, what’s done is done, let’s focus on the result, a draw away at Liverpool is always a good result, but a draw in these circumstances was absolutely massive, as soon as we went down to 10, I expected Liverpool to grab their chance and put the game away, but we stepped up and it was another defensive masterclass from the whole squad, bravo.
The Admin @ At The Bridge Pod
I think it’s time for Jurgen to go. Sorry mate, you will always be loved here, we may even build a statue after you brought us out of the wilderness, but the time has come.
The LFC team from 2 or 3 years ago would have destroyed that Chelsea team today! Destroyed! It would have been 4 or 5 even before the sending off. So it’s hard to conclude anything other than the team has gone backwards this last 2 years. The injuries last year provided a gift-wrapped excuse to cover that decline up is all.
But Jurgen looks tired. Devoid of ideas, and not done enough in the transfer market to be able to look at the bench and bring enough creativity on the pitch to do something (anything?!! ) differently. Jota on, of course, Thiago yep.
As a former low level player myself (bit part, Vauxhall conf,), I can tell you it’s often easier to defend with 10 men, communication is much easier and you hike everyone back! When your banks are against the wall, noone can get behind you!! But to not even come close is embarrassing! They could still be playing Sunday evening and it would still be 1-1!
Sorry Jurgen, move aside lad and let stevie have a go eh?
Harvey Elliot looked like a 100 million pound signing. Lukaku didn’t to be fair.
Liverpool vs Chelsea coverage
Perhaps I’m a Liverpool supporter blinded by the disappointment of just a point, but the insistence on praising Chelsea at every turn in the F365 response grates a bit. To me it seems odd to conclude that Chelsea’s second half performance established their title credentials – going to five at the back and using every Mourinho-style trick in the book to hold on for a point seems a lot more like a side not sure about its status at all. Would City have done that? Apparently Chelsea were somehow unlucky that they defended a corner badly then had a player sent off for stopping a goal by batting it away with his arm – pretty sure that’s just the rules. And they were brilliant in attack even though they kept making the wrong decision. Then Chelsea’s defence were amazing because of all the blocks they made, but they had the best chance of the second half even though it was well blocked. They’re great because they make blocks and they’re also great when their shots are blocked!
One man who should be very pleased with the narrative is Lukaku, who was terrible – didn’t hold the ball up, didn’t win much in the air and made the wrong decision every time his midfield gave him a chance to run at the defence. Surely the ‘focal point’ is supposed to come to prominence when down to ten.
Would have been nice to get three points, would also be nice to see a bit of balanced coverage.
Arsenal’s death spiral
I’d like to say this is the bottom for Arsenal but sadly I just can’t. With these owners, this CEO, this DOF and this manager, they can continue their rapid decline. Relegation really shouldn’t be off the table as a possibility.
Recruitment, squad management, coaching, tactics, team selection – they’re all the worst in the EPL probably. The only thing that isn’t is investment – there has been lots of it. Just by people who are completely clueless.
It’s been clear for a while that there is no-one at Arsenal who really knows what they’re doing in their roles. It’s been easy to see the poor decision making but recently, they’ve started making decisions which can only be described as unfathomable. They literally make no sense.
Retaining Xhaka, extending his contract and making him a vice-captain again. They’ve kept this toxic asset, poisoning the club, when they could have sold him and used that money (along with what they spent on Ramsdale) to bring in Bissouma instead… they’re deranged.
Arteta thought so poorly of Kolasinac that he sent him out on loan last January when there was no fit left back at the club. And now he’s starting against Man City whilst Mari, an Arteta signing, sits on the bench. What does that say about Mari? About the club’s recruitment? About its squad management?
There’s no point analysing more of these decisions, they all look just as crazy as these.
If I were Ek, I’d be putting in a new bid right now… just 20% lower than the last. Surely the Kroenkes will be dreading how low the value could drop.
AFTV is the real problem
Ugh…Where to begin. Firstly, I am ashamed and humiliated. For three decades I have supported the Arsenal with all my heart and that was the worst performance I have ever seen. Worse than 8-2, worse than the 5-1 to Liverpool, worse than the Bayern defeats. Our problems run deeper than Kroenke, Edu, or even Arteta (lets be honest, he is a “yes man’ who does what he is told to do- his face says it all…the man still can’t believe he got the job). The problem lies with the fans. We are divided and it is due to one reason, and one reason only – AFTV.
When I was growing up there was honor and pride to being an Arsenal supporter. We were different but “good” different. A few of the AFTV boys I see that in…Lee Judges and Graham for example (AFTV Chris as well but he was bullied out by DT, Robbie and the boys club). AFTV is a plague. A bunch or entitled, spoiled, narcissistic, sycophants that know little to nothing about football (have you heard the analysis???) that unfortunately have a platform that reaches the whole world. This is the world we are living in. If you have the followers and the “likes” you can influence the masses. Shame on Robbie, shame on DT, shame on Turkish, shame on Troopz, how can these people call themselves arsenal supporters? They have stripped the dignity of this once great club. How can these people tell Wenger, a proper football man, how to run the club? How can the masses follow blindly? They are toxic and the downfall of the Arsenal is directly linked to the emergence of AFTV. Get these people out of our club as soon as possible. I don’t understand how they can show their faces at the stadium after the way they humiliated, degraded and abused our greatest manager of all time?
I was watching one of the videos where Turkish is mouthing off with the Arsene Wenger paperback book in the background…how dare you…how dare you! This best sums AFTV up- when it suits them, and money is on the line, “support the Arsenal”, otherwise – scream, shout, cry, throw a tantrum and create a mess to benefit the channel and attract fans to youtube (most of whom support other teams). We are the laughing stock not only of English football, but of world football….and that is due to AFTV.
I feel ashamed and embarrassed we did not stand up for Wenger while these cowards relentlessly abused him for months/years (no banners of flying plane protest for Arteta?) . We failed Wenger with our apathy and indifference. History will not forget that. That will not happen again. AFTV out of our club. You’ve made your money, you’ve destroyed a once great organization…its enough now…just walk away. History will remember DT, Troopz, Turkish and especially Robbie (but he doesn’t care as its all about the money) as the men responsible for the downfall of the Arsenal spirit. Wenger deserved to leave with dignity but after 22 years of dedicated service that was not the case. We failed him…only now we are seeing how great of a manger he was with the limited resources he was working with. Can you image SAF being bullied like this at Utd? Thank you Mr. Wenger…always in our hearts. A true Arsenal legend! AFTV OUT TONIGHT!
Zed Jones (please print this as I am a simple man and not a loudmouth buffon with the social media reach of AFTV so this is my only option…tried to conduct myself with some class and dignity but it’s time to speak up)
No points. No goals. No ideas.
Mikel Arteta just baffles me- How does Kolasinac play at centre back when Saliba is going great in Ligue Un? Wasn’t he on his way to Turkey to resume his role as Ozil’s bodyguard? The right back position continues to be a revolving door of mediocrity.
Xhaka getting a new contract and celebrates by landing his team in the shit yet again. Tells you everything you need to know about how far the Gunners have fallen. A bang average player who should have exited stage left years ago is instead given a bump in pay and at this rate will be due a testimonial before all is said and done.
Aubameyang deciding once again he wasn’t bothered to try against City (that contract extension is looking like a truly horrendous piece of business). Arsenal have had a plethora of piss poor captains in the last 15 years but the man from Gabon takes the biscuit.
Willan and Cedric getting bumper deals within the last 12 months but the club is now desperately trying to get rid before the transfer window closes.
It’s the almost complete lack of threat from Arsenal in their first 3 league games that should be the most concerning. They just don’t look like scoring. It is becoming clear that Arteta does not have the experience to find the necessary solutions. He parrots the same trite banalities after every game but the on pitch performances continue to deteriorate.
At this point the only people trusting the process should be the Amazon documentary film crew.
Look, I’m not an Arsenal fan. But whatever we might like to say to tease Arsenal fans it is a big club. They have the highest gross and Net spend this transfer window if I am right. And one of the highest net spends in the last 3 years. They absolutely should not be 0 points, 0 goals, conceded 9 after three games. 21% possession against Man City is shameful. The squad is much better than it currently looks – remember that a lot of Chelsea players looked hopeless under Lampard and look like world beaters under Tuchel (Jorginho, Rudiger, Christensen spring to mind). Aubemeyang, Partey et al could amazing again. The club and fans deserve better. If this was my club – Chelsea – Arteta would have been sacked by now, and rightly so. Arsenal need to pull the trigger – at this point almost anyone would do better. It is sad, even as a rival fan, to see them laid so Low. Come on Arsenal board – grow a pair, fire Arteta.
Tim Colyer, Chelsea fan, Singapore (ex London)
When I saw Xhaka go in with both feet out of control I turned it off. Watching him press past the halfway line vs 3 CMs, slowly wandering around as City run rings around him. How he starts vs top teams who can just press him out of the game. It’s at City ffs. And why Arteta is playing 3 at the back when he doesn’t even have 2 fit CBs vs that midfield beggars belief. It’s Bank Holiday weekend, I don’t need to start it watching City run through a training exercise.
Rob A (hoof, auba jump, City recycle) AFC
Well, at least Arsenal showed against West Brom that they are indeed ready for the Championship!!
Dilemma for an Arsenal fan
Yes I’m frustrated at the poor management and poor performances.
But, I’m making so much money betting against my team, it’s like I have an additional pension plan.
Conflicted Gunner in France.
Referees ruining the game
I have always held the opinion it wasn’t VAR ruining the show, it was how the EPL chose to implement it, that ruined it. It now seems, when a referee is asked to view a screen, they automatically choose the penalty spot. They assume to have made a wrong decision as opposed to reviewing the entire video play. Akin to accusing someone of murder because they were pictured with the weapon.That Liverpool vs Chelsea game was set up nicely until Anthony Taylor made that decision to send off Reese James, and I immediately didn’t want Liverpool to win.
At the start of the game I was neutral, I cannot on TV make out how that ended up as a red card. Off his thigh onto his arm, when I saw an Everton player get his arm pulled back, and that wasn’t even a foul.
How the EPL implemented VAR was clearly wrong, I think UEFA, Bundesliga have made the best of it, but they have scaled back so much, some of the decisions make no sense. I feel for some of these teams, because if they stop giving some of these penalty decisions, some of them suffer.
All in all, I’d like consistency, I personally feel they have gone conservative, and it felt like all they do is show them a picture and ask them to make a decision. I feel context is important, especially for red card decisions. It spoiled the game, and if as a referee, you spoil a game, I’d rather it be a clear an obvious choice.
Dave(Always hate on the Ref),Somewhere
The ineptitude of the chrome domed Anthony Taylor whom apparently only took a look at a still image rather than the video leading up to that moment aside, why can’t refs just give the goal if the handball directly prevents a goal (not a goal scoring opportunity)?
That way, with the assistance of VAR, even an unmitigated failure like the aforementioned can just award the goal without sending off James for what clearly was an accidental handball.
For deliberate handballs like Suarez against Ghana, he has the authority to both give the goal and send off the culprit.
Response to Ronaldo comments
Imagine if Southampton didn’t sign Kevin Keegan way back because they needed other positions more?
Imagine if Newcastle didn’t sign Shearer because they needed other positions more?
Imagine if PSG didn’t just sign Messi because they were alright up front?
Imagine if Juve didn’t sign Ronaldo because they’d already won 6 or whatever on the bounce?
Imagine if Bologna didn’t sign Roberto Baggio the year they had him because he had a couple of middling seasons and he would be gone (which he was) if he had a good season?
I bet you lots and lots of theoretical Internet money that those Bologna fans were extremely excited and have very fond memories of the year of Baggio. Even if it didn’t have “long term plan” in mind.
Yeah, I bet all Bologna fans are sick to this day at the thought that they had a happy and well performing Baggio when they ideally could have made better alterations in center mid?
Middlesborough fans, I have a question? If you could go back in time, would you turn your noses up at Juninho to instead pursue a better midfield partner to compliment or be complemented by Phil Stamp?
I bet Feyenoord fans have deep regret about signing their iconic rival Johan Cruyff for a solitary trophy laden season? He was their biggest rivals biggest icon, and I’m sure instead of getting an “over the hill” guy like that they would have been better off planning for the future. A future that has seen them be a very distant 3rd in the PSV/Ajax/Feyenoord Dutch heavyweight stakes. Yeah, I bet that one season is looked back on with great regret by many as they didn’t become champs again for another decade. Even though that inspirational deal was the first time they had been champions in a decade. He wouldn’t be as needed as such and such would have been etc.
Dave (smh at these visionaries, and lol Arsenal), Dublin
A supremely opportunistic deal
I do not think that the signing of CR7 necessarily exposes any type of lack of planning on the part of UTD. If that was the case, UTD would not have signed both Varane and Sancho (a year after having first tried to sign him. That’s called patience and…planning). These two signings have actually solved two obvious issues in the team. UTD is still to resolve the DM position though. But that is the only major issue they need to look at. And who is to say that UTD would not do so before the end of this window and/or next year? Our official main striker, Martial, had a nightmarish 2020/21. His official back-up, Cavani, although very good for his age, is 34. Greenwood has mainly played on the right wing; he is 19 and is not yet ready to lead the line for a massive club like UTD – despite having done well enough against Leeds and Southampton. Can he repeat the trick against the defences of Chelsea, Liverpool, City, PSG, Bayern, Real, Barca and Juve right now? I doubt it. So UTD, opportunistically (and that’s the bought a guy who is supremely effective in the box and outscored Lukaku, who everyone is lauding, over the past two years in Serie A. He may be 36 but everyone at UTD understands this is a short-term solution (hence the length of his contract). Why would UTD not still go for a younger striker next year? Why does it necessarily need to be Haaland? Why not Vlahović of Fiorentina (21, 21 goals vs Lukaku’s 24 last year) or Silva of Leipzig (25, 28 goals vs Haaland’s 27). Folks need to be more imaginative. UTD did well here, in line with their transfer window so far…
Jeannot the Red Devil