Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Point earned or two dropped against Villa?

I suppose your view on the Aston Villa result tonight depends on whether your glass is half full or half empty.

As it happens I believe that was a good point earned.

Believe me, a draw at Villa Park in this day and age is a pretty good result. Ask Chelsea.

Aston Villa are a very good side and I'd have taken a point before the game all day long.

This morning I'd have thought that 8 points from these fixtures against Villa, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool would be very promising. That looks very doable now.

I think Sol Campbell deserves a special mention as well.

Many doubted the logic in re-signing Campbell. Some said it was a gamble.

Well Sol was immense tonight and I think he went a long way in proving why Wenger was right to bring him back.

It was like watching the Sol of old at times. He was superb, especially in the air and slotted in alongside Gallas with ease.

Having him back, as back-up for Gallas and Vermaelen, is very reassuring indeed.

Our Belgian stopper came off injured tonight and I hope he makes a speedy recovery because we need him but having Campbell ready to step in as a replacement softens the blow slightly.

For those of you who find the result against Villa hard to take, my advice would be to keep your chin up. That was a hard place to get a result and we have.

Forget Chelsea winning. If we can get through this difficult run of games undefeated and with 8 points the confidence in the side will be immense.

And I believe we will win the league.

Keep it Goonerish...............

Monday, 25 January 2010

Is The Faith Being Shown In Theo Beginning To Wear Thin Now?

I hate to dig out individual players at the best of times. It's something that I very rarely do. In fact I can't actually remember the last time I dug anyone out who's wears an Arsenal shirt.

Today I feel I have to because it's something that has lurked in a dark place at the back of my mind for a long time and despite my best attempts to keep it there, hiding in the shadows, its waiting to get out.

Is Theo Walcott actually Arsenal quality? Because I'm beginning to have my doubts. He needs to liven up. And liven up quick.

There I've said it. I'm ready to be berated.

I love Theo and I want him to succeed so badly in an Arsenal shirt but I have a lingering doubt in my mind about him.

I don't think I'm the only one either and I'm beginning to wonder if maybe the fact that he is English is the reason we have tolerated his lack of development for so long.

I understand that the above is quite a strong statement to say. Let me say now that I have no problems with nationality whatsoever. If a player is good enough then I don't care where he is from. He could come from my sock draw for all I care, it matters not.

The thing is Arsenal have been mullered more than Muller Rice in the English media over the fact we field eleven foreign players on a regular basis. Being English Theo kind of balances it out in a strange way.

Is that enough though?

There is no doubting that Theo has his moments. But I've only seen flashes and glimpses of what he can do. He doesn't do it regularly enough.

I know he has suffered though injuries, and you can point to this being a factor, but surely there is only so much time you can allow someone to 'develop'?

It's not like Theo is a kid with promise anymore either. He will soon be 21 and has been at Arsenal for 4 years already. There comes a time when that potential must be fulfilled.

In the past I've seen Theo talk about the 2010 World Cup. Well, if I was him, I'd concentrate on getting fit, playing regularly, getting some decent form to repay Arsenal who pay him a lot of money, and us Gooners who show a lot of faith in him before I think of England.

My patience is wearing a little with Theo and I hate to say that. I really hope he makes me eat my words, I really do, but at the moment I can't see it. And that is sad.

Walcott needs to start showing that he is worthy of the Arsenal shirt. My heart says that he is but my brain (despite how small it is) tells me different.

I know its easy to sit here behind a keyboard and criticize a young man who has many years ahead of him but I honestly believe that its becoming make or break time with Theo.

Keep it Goonerish.................

Saturday, 23 January 2010

William Gallas Is A Disgrace

How dare he?

How dare William Gallas make a genuine attempt to win the ball and then end up injuring that poor Bolton Wanderers player.

That poor Bolton Wanderers player. That poor English player. Injured by that big French meanie.

And why didn't we kick the ball out? Bastards. Even that dirty Gallas had a chance to boot it out. After all, he was the guilty party in all this. That wanker.

Perhaps Bolton learnt from Arsenal not putting the ball into touch because minutes later, when another of their players was lying in a heap on the floor, and they had the ball, they decided to keep it in play.

They tried to copy Arsenal's blue-print but rather unluckily for Bolton they didn't score like we did. Well played all the same.

Never mind that in the past, there have been several attempts by Bolton players to maim Arsenal players purposely and that Gallas' bad tackle was actually a mistake. No never mind that.

Gallas is as bad as a mass murderer. That French bastard should be tried and then sentenced. To life. Or to play for Tottenham Hotspur.

Forget the Angel that is Matt Taylor treading on a defenceless Cesc Fabregas' neck whilst the Spaniard is lying on the floor.

That Holy brilliant Angel Taylor, he tried to help Cesc up. Albeit yanking the Arsenal's skipper up via his hair but the good intention was there. That good old English intention.

Don't worry about Kevin Davies, who has never fouled anyone in his life. That good old fashioned English centre-forward who last season said that Arsenal 'Scream Loudly'. Who's screaming now?

Don't forget the rules. You are allowed to kick Arsenal to a bloody pulp but they can't kick back. Not even via a mistake.

Typical Arsenal cheats.

William 'The Disgrace' Gallas obvously forgot those rules. And he is the reason Bolton will be relegated.


Keep it Goonerish..................

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Cesc Fabregas is reminding me of the old Steven Gerrard

I'm not saying that Cesc Fabregas plays like Steve Gerrard. In fact I think they are a totally different type of player.

However, at the moment Fabregas is reminding me of how Gerrard used to be for Liverpool.

The England man used to grab Liverpool by the scuff of the neck though games and almost single handingly drag them to victory. I say used to because I haven't seen it from him this season.

Our little Spaniard is doing for us what Gerrard did for Liverpool. Dragging Arsenal to victory.

Cesc has been unbelievable this season and has taken his game to such a high level. The best thing is that he is young and will still improve. Quite frightening really.

He has grown into the skippers role and has become a true leader of Arsenal.

There were times when I would marvel at Steve Gerrard and his influence at Liverpool. Well, Cesc Fabregas is fast becoming as important to Arsenal as Gerrard is at Anfield.

In my opinion, that is a compliment to Cesc.

I don't think we've had anyone at the club who could influence the team like this since Thierry Henry left. Henry could and would dominate games and produce something from nothing.

Cesc Fabregas is doing the same. The difference is under his leadership we look like we will win something. That is no slight on Henry.

Keep it Goonerish...........

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

The Stuff Champions Are Made Of/ Thomas Vermaelen Should Be Arsenal Vice-Captain

Surely now even the non-believers will begin to believe.

This Arsenal side are true title contenders and that win tonight was the stuff that champions are made of.

To win was sweet. To win from two down was even sweeter. To win from two down and then go top of the league is even better than the sweetest of sweeties.

Victory was important tonight but to win and go top of the pile, in those circumstances, will be the biggest confidence boost the club, players and Gooners have had for a long while.

We can do it. And while we are doing it, Cesc Fabregas is becoming an Arsenal legend.

Despite Cesc Fabregas being on the verge of Arsenal legendary status I must add that Thomas Vermaelen is fast becoming my Arsenal hero.

In my opinion the Belgian should be our vice-captain. The impact he has made at Arsenal has been immense. Well done Wenger for bringing him to us.

Keep it Goonerish................

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

FIFA make sense in a controversial way

I usually can't stand FIFA. They do my bonce in. Especially the President Sepp Blatter. He is a twat.

For once though I think they have done the right thing by Thierry Henry.

Having said that I've often wondered whether FIFA's reaction would have been the same if an England player did what Thierry did against Ireland. But that is irrelevant.

Had Henry been banned for his handball against Ireland I think it would have been awful for football in general. It would have opened up the biggest can of problems that football has ever seen.

Let's get it right, what Henry did against Ireland was wrong but he is no cheat. I fail to remember him cheating once in an Arsenal shirt and that is not using my usual selective memory.

People have said that he touched the ball twice with his hand. Well, he did. But I'd argue with anyone that the first time the ball met his hand was an accident, the second of course he touched the ball into his path.

Yes, he handballed it, and yes, Ireland suffered, but what Henry did was act on instinct. It was never premeditated. It just happened. And it happened very very fast.

Ask yourself, would you have done the same for your country in Henry's shoes? The man is as fair as they come and as far as I'm concerned he did what anyone would do for their country.

If FIFA had banned Henry then every single refereeing decision could be questioned because someone could have got away with something they shouldn't have. Football would be fucked.

Throw-ins, free-kicks, offsides, everything would be scrutinised. Football would become unbearable.

There are always losers in football as a result for something happening like this. Unfortunately it has happened to the Republic of Ireland but these things could happen to anyone.

Thierry Henry is no cheat and some Ireland fans won't agree with me but I thoroughly believe that FIFA have done the right thing for a change.

Keep it Goonerish...........

Saturday, 16 January 2010

How about Cesc Fabregas in the DM role?

Alex Song has cemented his place in the Arsenal team as our defensive midfield rock but unfortunately for us he is away doing his duty for Cameroon in the African Cup of Nations.

Whilst he is in Africa Denilson was expected to replace him in the side. At the moment the little Brazilian is injured and will miss the game against Bolton tomorrow.

To be honest, who knows how long Denilson will be out for? When sustaining the injury against Everton it looked like he had been shot by a sniper. Hopefully he will be fit again soon. When the bullet is removed.

With Song and Denilson unavailable for selection it leaves Arsenal shorter than Arshavin in terms of options in the defensive midfield role.

Most people I know seem to believe that Diaby will play there. I don't think that would be a good idea.

In my opinion Diaby doesn't have the discipline or the concentration to fill Song or Denilson's boots. The man is a class player but his natural game is to attack and he tends to roam from his position. A DM cannot afford to do that.

Of the options available to Arsene Wenger I'd be tempted to play Cesc Fabregas there until the likes of Denilson and Song are back.

I know our captain has been in fantastic scoring form and has actually scored more than Wayne Rooney in an over 65's brothel lately but he has the intelligence to play there.

Fabregas' hero is Pep Guardiola. The Barcelona manager was a defensive midfielder and I believe that Cesc would revel in that role.

We've seen how good the skipper is further up the field but he could easily slot in as Arsenal's 'quarter-back'. Cesc is one of the best in the world at passing, keeping possession, is a fiesty little bastard and has the tactical nous to do the job properly.

It would only be for a few games and in my opinion he would be the best player to use there at the moment.

How about you?

Keep it Goonerish................

Thursday, 14 January 2010

So the FA Cup is important NOW Manchester United and Liverpool are out?

Shouldn't winning the FA Cup always be important to Arsenal Football Club?

We've won the Cup 10 times in our history and it was the last trophy that we managed to get our hands on.

Before we beat West Ham in the 3rd round I doubted the importance of the competition to Arsene Wenger. I was worried he would sacrifice the Cup by resting players. He proved me wrong by selecting a strong team. And a team that won too.

I read, and heard, many people saying the FA Cup is far from important these days anyway.

Funny how opinions change isn't it?

Now that Manchester United and Liverpool have been knocked out, it takes on an even more important significance. Why?

Even with Manchester United and Liverpool involved surely we should be looking to win every trophy we challenge for. Especially the FA Cup. Even the Carling Cup. I mean, we go for the Premiership and Champions League don't we?

The competition has become a little easier to win now with both those clubs out. But only now, because they are out, do I see the vast majority of people saying it is important to Arsenal.

So what has changed?

Were we not good enough to win it when those two were involved? Are we becoming that desperate for a trophy that people will change their view just because it became easier to win? Or is it deeper than that?

I have to say that the FA Cup has always been important to me. I love the romance and the fact that it is still regarded as the best domestic trophy to get your hands on in the world of football.

The FA Cup has taken a bit of a kicking in recent years. Qualifying for the Champions League is seen as a greater achievement and I find that a real shame.

Unfortunately because of the financial gain from being in Europes premiership competition the Cup is not a massive priority.

You can argue that a top four finish is more important but in my view Arsenal should be going for the title, not top four finishes. And even then if you are not successful in winning the league, I'm pretty confident you'd be in the top four anyway.

Don't view the FA Cup as something that is not a priority. It is. It's always been important and should be in the future.

We should always want to win it.

Just because Manchester United and Liverpool are out it doesn't mean that we should take a sudden interest in winning it.

The FA Cup deserves more than that.

Keep it Goonerish...............

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

If Sol Campbell can, then why can't Mathieu Flamini?

In bringing Sol Campbell back Arsene Wenger has done something that I never thought he would ever do and re-signed a former player.

Wenger is a stubborn man but perhaps this sudden change of policy is the sign of a person who will even go against his own principles to bring back silverware to us. This surely is only a good thing.

There is mixed reaction about Campbell coming back to us, that is expected, but at least it shows that Arsene is prepared to swallow some pride because he knows that it is best for Arsenal.

Some people believe that Wenger has an agenda regarding Arsenal and that he refuses to change his ways. Well, the signing of Sol proves that wrong.

As I've said Wenger is stubborn and appeared stuck in his ways but if he is prepared to mellow a little for Arsenal to win things then I think he deserves some credit for doing so.

Have you ever heard of the saying "The Grass Isn't Always Greener On The Other Side"? Well, how many former Arsenal players does that ring true with?

The list is endless.

I've posted about former which former Gunner(s) I'd like Wenger to re-sign in the past and Sol Campbell was top of the list. That's not entirely true. But a player I'd love to see come back is Mathieu Flamini.

I know, I know, he's a money-grabbing little traitor fucker and in the past I've even called him Fla-money but if we are ready to forgive Sol Campbell (who's past misdemeanors could be considered worse than Fla-money's, sorry Flamini's) then I'm ready to welcome the Frenchman back with open arms.

Of course it seems that Mathieu fucked us over. But in truth Arsenal are equally to blame for him leaving. We tried to sell him to Birmingham the summer before he actually left and we let his contract run down.

There is a slight chance that Flamini didn't feel wanted in the last year of his contract.

Having said that Mathieu did say he wanted to stay and the next minute he was swanning off to Italy to sign a contract with his boyhood idol's AC Milan. I'm sure he did the same to Marseille, so he had previous.

So really Arsenal and Flamini are both to blame for him leaving under such poxy circumstances.

What chance is there of being a reconciliation? With Campbell coming back there has to be a chance.

Who knows how Alex Song will come back from the African Cup of Nations? The man filling his shoes, Denilson, is injured. This injury may be more serious than first thought, especially when you see how the Brazilian went down completely unchallenged.

Fabregas would love it. Apparently our skipper and Flamini was joined at the hip when together. They certainly gelled and in my opinion could have formed a partnership as good as, if not better, than Vieira and Petit.

Yes, I really did say that.

A loan/permanent move for our former hyperactive midfielder would be good for the club. He is unhappy at Milan and we could do with his drive and determination.

Imagine a midfield of Song, Cesc and Flamini? Pretty solid. Add the likes of Diaby, Ramsey and Denilson . We would have the best midfield options in the league. Proper.

Keep it Goonerish................

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Signing Sol is a good move, a bold prediction involving Saha and Senderos

So it's true then. Big Sol is back.

Well, almost.

I've read and heard various opinions from people, including many Gooners, and the response is mixed.

The idea of Sol Campbell coming back appeals to me. Yes, I know that people think that he is loopy and he 'betrayed' us by saying he was going to play abroad only to end up at Portsmouth but lets let bygones be bygones.

Some will be screaming that Arsenal have just taken the cheapest option and that Wenger needed to spend big money.

At the end of the day Campbell knows he is coming to Arsenal to be cover for Vermaelen and Gallas. How many players would have come to the club knowing that?

Of course Sol won't be the same player he was during his first spell with us but he is still Premiership quality and I tell you something, he is certainly a more experienced player than that period. That's the key word, experienced. And that will rub off on his new team mates.

How many times have we heard that Arsenal lack experience?

To have Sol on the bench or the pitch will be a big lift to these boys and I know for a fact, without any disrespect meant, that I would prefer to have Campbell as an option rather than Senderos or Silvestre.

What's more important is that he has a quality missing from most of this squad; he knows what it takes to win the league. That leadership could be crucial for us when the title run-in gets tight and its squeaky bottom time.

He knows the club, knows how it works and won't have trouble settling it in. The move, despite how bizarre it may look, gets a thumbs up from me.

With Campbell's impending arrival, I expect a departure. That's how Arsenal usually work. The player I expect to leave is Phil Senderos. Betcha didn't guess I would say it was him?

Big Phil has wanted to leave for an age and whilst I'd be a little sad to see him go (he seems part of the furniture, kind of antique) it would be best for Arsenal and himself that he moved on.

It's a shame how his Arsenal career has developed really. On his day he could be immense but he is a confidence player and the more games he plays the better his performances. Even if he played well though you always had that nagging doubt that he was about to completely cock something up. Truly a shame.

I've no doubt a move would really resurrect his career but he would have to play for a club that has lesser incentives than Arsenal to flourish. A place where every mistake isn't scrutinised. Everton could be that club.

I like Everton and a club like them is the level of Senderos. Not top level but a good level and a good club. He has been linked to Goodison Park before, almost signing there in the summer but it fell through for some reason.

This is where my bold prediction lies. I reckon, and don't go rushing to the bookies on this, that a move involving Senderos and Evertons Louis Saha could be on the cards. Some kind of swap deal.

Saha is exactly what Wenger looks for in a player. French and injured. All jokes aside Saha is an experienced striker and we lack that. He is quality, there is no doubting that, but somewhat injury-prone.

If Saha could get over his injuries then I'd be all for it but the fact is he still spends as much time on the physios bed as he does on the pitch.

Is Saha what we need?

Keep it Goonerish...............

Saturday, 9 January 2010

Fair play to Everton but we do lack a certain something

A very frustrating afternoon but I don't think that anyone can dispute how well Everton played today. They were the better side for most of the game and are probably disappointed that they didn't come away with all three points.

Arsenal were shit and far from their best. Rightly or wrongly we Gooners are quick to criticize a poor Arsenal performance but Everton deserve credit for nullifying us and playing as well as they did.

Everton came here today very pissed off with the fact we embarrassed them 6-1 on the opening game of the season. On their own turf. They have also come here on the back of a good run. A run that includes a 3-3 draw away to the 'Mighty Chelsea'.

They wanted it today. They wanted it bad. I think for most of the match they wanted it more than we did. Perhaps we were too complacent? We have been guilty of that before this season. Whatever the case you have to at least match effort with effort and we only did that after going 2-1 down.

Of course we missed players through injury but that is no excuse. Everton did too. Also the conditions were bad but the Merseysiders were in the same boat as well.

This was a big chance to put pressure on Manchester United and Chelsea and obviously we missed that opportunity. The performance, the result wasn't the best and both clubs will be smiling but I think we showed character today.

Had that been United or Chelsea pulling a draw from nothing in the last minute I have no doubt that we would be hearing about the grit and determination shown to not lose. That is what I'm taking from today. We showed that determination to not lose. That bodes well despite not getting the result we wanted.

I've no doubt that we will hear we were lucky for scoring two deflected goals either. I'd say that it was about time we had lady luck smile on us. Frank Lampard seems to get enough of her charms.

After today there will be people screaming for Wenger to buy players. I'd agree that 1-2 players could really help us win things this season. In my opinion we need a striker and we need one who can hold the ball up.

We lost the ball so many times when we had it deep in Everton's half and it caused us problems. Arshavin is doing a job for the team at the moment but it is a lot to keep asking him to play in a position that doesn't come natural to him.

Arsenal could really do with a physical presence up-front. I hate to say it but we miss someone like Adebayor who for all his faults, could hold the ball and take pressure off the team or keep it. Not that I want him back!

Well, all in all, not a great day but as I write United are drawing 1-1 with Birmingham so it may seem a little better in 20 minutes or so.

A disappointing result but take nothing away from Everton who played well and restricted us.

We've just got to keep believing because we can win the league.

Leep it Goonerish.............

Friday, 8 January 2010

Patrick Vieira; He aint no traitor!

Well, Patrick Vieira has come back to England and while it will seem very strange to see him in a Manchester City shirt I'd like to wish him the best of luck.

The most romantic in us (including myself) would have loved to have seen Vieira come back to his spiritual home wearing the red and white again.

However, think about it properly and you have to say that it was probably best for Arsenal, and Paddy, that he played elsewhere.

Without doubt we had the best years of Patrick's career. He joined us when he was 20 and left at 29. He was the best midfielder in the world, and we saw him at his glorious best.

Unfortunately for the Frenchman those days are behind him and I'm glad that we shared those times when he spent almost a decade with us.

I still believe that he can do a job for most teams but had he re-signed with us I think we'd have a seen a player who was a shadow of his former self.

I want to remember Vieira how he was with us at his best. I wouldn't him to have come back and, forgive me for maybe sounding harsh, tainted his image.

That said, I hope he will do a job at Manchester City (not enough to mess Arsenal up!) and secure his place his place for France at the 2010 World Cup.

Vieira is not a traitor for joining Manchester City. As Goodplaya says, had he come back and signed for Tottenham, Manchester United or Chelsea it may had been different.

He will earn a good wage at City, he is admired by the manager there and will get games. That is what Paddy wanted. I say good luck to him.

Keep it Goonerish............

Thursday, 7 January 2010

A player who could add variety and depth to the squad; shame really

Since Arsene Wenger has admitted he is in the hunt for a striker we have been linked with almost every single forward in the world of football.

From Carlton Cole to Louis Saha, you name them, we've been linked to them. Le Grove talk of two more names you can add to the list.

A striker is definitely needed. Let's be honest, Robin van Persie is out for the season, Bendtner is struggling, Eduardo (the poor little sod) will probably continue to get niggles, Arshavin can't continue up top for the entire rest of the season, Walcott isn't trusted there yet and Vela is still developing.

Whilst we need a forward I'd argue that we could do with another player to add some more depth to an already talented squad.

The player I had in mind could cover a variety of positions, already plays in the Premiership, could be available, is talented, admired by Wenger and has been linked with us for several years already.

Vincent Kompany

The Belgian international can play in the defensive midfield role, full-back and centre back.

Whilst Alex Song is at the African Cup of Nations, Denilson will probably fill the void left by the him in the holding role of Arsenal's midfield. I have no qualms with that really but I do worry if Gallas or Vermaelen were to suffer an injury. Or even Denilson.

Wenger loves a player who can give variety to the side and with Kompany able to that he could be a good addition to the squad. He could easily slot into defence or midfield comfortably allowing Wenger the chance to rest players like Gallas, Vermaelen, Sagna or even Denilson.

Kompany has fallen down the pecking order at Manchester City, especially in midfield. He has the likes of De Jong, Ireland and Barry ahead of him there and with the new arrival of Roberto Mancini at the club who knows what the future holds for him.

It's also believed that Mancini is keen to bring Patrick Vieira to Manchester. If that is the case then surely Kompany will fall even further down in the Italian manager's thoughts. It seems that Kompany quite likes Mancini (going by this interview) and has done a job in defence for him but when the likes of Lescott return from injury, things may not seem so rosy.

Wenger has said that it would be difficult to buy players from Manchester City but maybe players on the fringes of the first team wouldn't be so hard to sign. I'd put Kompany in that category at City. Hardly the players fault, more down to the fact that City are intent on buying big names and want to become the new 'Galaticos'.

A big plus would be his availability in the Champions League. That is not the most important thing in Arsene Wenger's mind but nevertheless it gives the transfer an even more glamorous look.

In the past Arsene Wenger has admitted an interest in Kompany but the time was never right to bring him to Arsenal. Maybe the time could be right now?

Alex Song has been one of our best players this season and has come on leaps and bounds but who knows what type of condition he will be in when he gets back from Africa. It may take a few weeks for him to recover from what will be an exhausting tournament. He may come back as fresh as a daisy but what is clear is that he has played an awful lot of games this campaign and he could suffer from burn-out. Kompany can allow Wenger to rotate the squad, especially in midfield.

The Belgian signed a new contract at Manchester City in October 2009 but these days contracts aren't really worth the paper they are written on. If a player fancies a move, then nine times out of ten he will get one as Arsenal have found out in recent years.

Who knows whether Kompany is on Wenger's radar? He has been in the past, that is for certain, but I don't think that Le Boss is really considering signing anything other than a striker at the moment.

I think that is a shame because someone like Vincent Kompany could really thrive at Arsenal and it would give Arsenal a lot more squad depth in our pursuit for all three trophies. I'm also confident that Kompany, given the chance, would move to Arsenal.

You never know though with Arsene! He could be working on a transfer as we speak.

Keep it Goonerish...............

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Is Carlton Cole good enough for Arsenal?

If you would have asked me whether Carlton Cole was good enough for Arsenal 18 months ago I probably would have pissed my Superman pants with laughter.

A player who began his career at Chelsea, spent loan spells at Wolves, Charlton Athletic and Aston Villa before finally signing for West Ham (confused yet?) on a permanent deal. Does this sound like a player who is Arsenal material?

Probably not.

Nowadays I have to say that my opinion on Cole has completely changed. If you would ask me whether Carlton Cole was good enough for Arsenal at this moment I wouldn't piss my Superman pants with laughter anymore. I would say yes. Why, yes he is.

Carlton Cole has been transformed from the player he was early in his career. The credit for that must go to West Ham and Gianfranco Zola. They have given him the belief to become the force he is today in the Premiership.

An aerial threat, strong, imposing and a handful for any defence, not to mention that he can play as a lone striker, Cole would be ideal for Arsenal. And I think that West Ham, rather reluctantly, would accept an offer below their real valuation of him because of their financial difficulties.

There is also the added bonus that Cole would be available for selection in the Champions League and FA Cup. Not to mention that Cole is very much in mind for Fabio Capello's World Cup squad. The England man will be very keen to impress Capello in the build up to South Africa 2010.

A move to us from West Ham wouldn't unsettle Cole either due to the fact that both clubs are based in London.

My only gripe with Carlton is that in the past he hasn't scored enough goals. Well, he has even improved that aspect of his attributes in recent times scoring 10 times in 27 Premiership appearances last season whilst netting a very impressive 7 in 13 games this campaign.

Well, Adebayor scored many goals for Arsenal so if he can, so can Carlton Cole!

Of all the rumours flying around about who we will sign, and Wenger openly admitting that he wants a striker, I see Cole as a very realistic contender. He is definitely good enough for Arsenal.

Keep it Goonerish.............

Monday, 4 January 2010

Alexandre Song deserves a massive, massive gee-up!

It's hard to imagine really but these days Alexandre Song has become one of the first names on the Arsenal team sheet.

Go back to your thoughts this time last year (Would be so much easier with one of those Star Trek or Doctor Who things) on Song. Would you be bothered that he would be going to the African Cup of Nations in 2010? Not really.

What are your thoughts nowadays? Be brutally honest. I'll hold my hands up and admit that Arsenal are gonna miss Song and could miss him bad.

To say that he has been the most improved Arsenal player in the last twelve months is an understatement. He has been one of Arsenal's best players this season and I would never have thought I would be saying that.

Song is by far from the finished article. In fact he still has a lot of improving to do. That is the exciting part. He has come on leaps and bounds and will only get better.

If he continues to progress at this rate then I guarantee you now, in the summer of 2011, that Real Madrid and Barcelona will be sniffing around with £15m+ bids. Mark my words.

In the Premiership there are only been one player better than Song in the defensive midfield role this campaign. Micheal Essien. But he is a monster. Song has been better than the rest.

So Alexandre Song, I salute you. Although there will still be doubters you have won round many a Gooner. You have won me around.

Not the complete player yet but one who will only improve in the future and one that deserves a massive, massive gee-up!

Keep it Goonerish............

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Arsene Wenger- I hold up my hands to ya buddy!

'It's obvious that the FA Cup isn't top of Arsene Wenger's agenda these days. In fact I reckon that he would rather win the meat raffle at my local boozer more'

Those were the words of some twat on my blog yesterday. What a dickhead eh? It would help if that dickhead wasn't myself mind. But it was. Straight from the horses mouth.

I have to hold my hands up to Arsene Wenger, he proved me wrong. I was worried that we would field an understrength side at West Ham and that it could go completely tits up. I have to say that the side Le Boss picked was spot-on.

What was even better was the bench. For a change in a domestic cup-tie we had the likes of Diaby and Nasri to call upon if the need be. As it happened we did need those two and the subs that Wenger made were inspired and at the right time. It changed the game in our favour when it looked like we were struggling to break West Ham down.

Nice one Arsene!

I have to say how pleased I am that Eduardo scored. A header from a cross too! We don't get enough balls into the box from wide positions in my opinion. It's not usually from the want of trying though. It's normally that whoever is crossing the ball can't get it past the first defender. Carlos Vela provided a peach for Eduardo's head and he made it look easy really.

When the little Mexican went wide left he looked a major threat. I know the boy can finish well but he looks very comfortable on the left wing. I remember when he was on loan to some Spanish side and he played on the left against Real Madrid. He tore Sergio Ramos (one of the best right backs in the world in my eyes) apart, put him back together, then tore him apart some more.

We have a lack of natural wingers, especially ones who hug the line, and I think that Vela would be best placed there at the moment. I understand that Wenger sees him as a central striker but he also sees Walcott as a central striker too and plays him wide right. Vela just seems more at ease taking on the full back to me with plenty of space to work with.

Was it me, of course being Arsenal biased, or did the ref Mark Clattenburg favour the home side today? I just felt that every little foul that could be given went West Ham's way. Have we upset Clattenburg in the past?

When Mr Clattenburg first came on the scene I believed he had the makings of a very good referee. Unfortunately he seems to have suffered 'Ref Syndrome' a disease that makes the man in black believe that the game is all about him. It's a shame because there is no cure and we could all be saying how fantastic it is having an official like him in charge of your game.

Where did five minutes come from at the end? It couldn't have been when West Ham's very own Mr. Miyagi tried to take off Diaby's head could it? I have to say that kick was quite impressive mind. To even reach the Frenchman's shoulder is quite an amazing feat in itself.

So, through to the next round and the momentum continues on. Of course the draw has been unkind to us again. Another away match against Premiership opponents. Stoke City will probably be more difficult than West Ham but if Wenger had his way Stoke would be fucked. If Le Boss could change a rule he would swap throw-ins for kick-ins. When you consider that Stoke City score 99% of their goals from Rory Delap's freakishly long throws then it could do us a favour!

Keep it Goonerish.......................

Saturday, 2 January 2010

Killing the FA Cup dream could turn our title hopes into a nightmare

I thought of that title all by myself. Clever aint I?

It's obvious that the FA Cup isn't top of Arsene Wenger's agenda these days. In fact I reckon that he would rather win the meat raffle at my local boozer more but I do worry if the worst case scenario happened tomorrow and we were beaten. All because we used an under-strength side.

Of course I understand the reason Le Boss wants to rest players for the league campaign and the title is more important than the FA Cup but the lessons of past seasons should have been learnt.

We are involved in a title race, the last time we were in the mixer for the title was in the 2007/08 season.

That season Wenger used an under-strength team against Manchester United in the FA Cup. In that match we were beaten more badly than Micheal Jackson's Bad. Don't forget the humiliation suffered at the Spuds in the Carling Cup either. Heavy 5-1 and 4-0 defeats really had a knock-on effect. We never seemed the same after those games.

I know Wenger won't lose the game on purpose tomorrow but I don't think he would be too bothered if we were beaten. He most probably sees the FA Cup as a little distraction. Not as irritating as the Carling Cup but a bit like needing a shit when stuck in a traffic jam.

What we have to remember is winning games builds momentum and confidence. And winning teams never seem to be tired either. We are on a fantastic run at the moment and we all want that run to continue. That's why we should pick our strongest team tomorrow. And not just tomorrow. We should do it in every round of the FA Cup.

Winning the FA Cup could finally turn this squad into winners again. Get that winning feeling back into the club. Once the players taste that silverware it makes them hungry for more. Trophies will always seem be prioritised but we should never risk one at the expense of another.

Try to win them all.

Keep it Goonerish.............

Friday, 1 January 2010

Do what? We still aint signed anyone?!!?

As I write the time on my Wolex (apparently a better version of a Rolex) says it is 14:35. What is going on?

We are 14 hours and 35 minutes into the newly opened January transfer window and Arsenal have yet to sign anyone. Is Wenger losing the plot? Where are these 'promised' signings?

In case you haven't noticed I'm displaying some sarcasm. Yes I know its the lowest form of wit but when it feels like a hammer is tapping away inside your head and all you can taste is stale beer despite brushing your teeth every 12 minutes, its the best I can muster today. So sorry.

I'm actually looking forward to this transfer window. Normally its drives me crazy because we are linked to every Tom, Dick and Harry but I have hope in this one.

What I will say is stay calm. Let's not go crazy if we don't sign anyone in the next 20 minutes. After that go mental and call for Wenger's head. Sorry, that's the sarcasm coming out again.

Be patient because if you don't and you believe every rumour that flies around you will lose the plot, going as mental as Britney Spears with an umbrella. Not a good look.

Anyway, Happy New Year to you all. Let's hope that 2010 is gonna be a good 'un for Arsenal. I truly believe it will be.

Keep it Goonerish............