Archive for the ‘Arsenal’ Category

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Unless you have a different idea to the rest of us on how the game of football should be played, it is difficult to disagree that Manchester City are the form team at the moment. Not only that but, when in full flow, they are without doubt the most attractive of the top teams to watch.

But who comes next? Forget parking the bus, forget different tactics and formations for different games. Who, when in full flow and playing all-out attacking football, is next in the list of “must watch” teams? (more…)

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This is a question we would like to be able to put to José Mourinho and Pep Guardiola. It would also get interesting replies from Arséne Wenger, Antonio Conte and Jürgen Klopp, not to mention Mauricio Pochettino.

To be fair they all set out, at the beginning of each season, to play open attractive football. Football is, after all, part of the entertainment industry and it’s success is measured, to an extent, by the amount of people who watch the games. This, in turn, dictates the quality of sponsorship attracted which determines the money paid into the clubs by these sponsors, and so on and so on. (more…)

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Tuesday night saw Manchester City take on Napoli at The Etihad. As has often been the case this season they started like an express train and were soon two goals up. It looked for all the world as though they were going to score four or more goals again.

Unusually though, for City anyway, they laboured a little in trying to find a third goal and it was actually Napoli who should have scored but Mertens penalty was straight down the middle, a route whereby the ball will often catch the goalkeepers legs whichever way he is diving, as it did in this case. (more…)

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Is José Mourinho just flirting with PSG in order to get some attention from his current employers? It is reported that he has asked for a “massive” pay rise, whatever that is, in order to sign a new and extended contract with United and he could be using the fact that he is still able to command the top jobs in European football as leverage to get it.

He could also be seriously contemplating taking the PSG job, either at the end of this contract or the next one.

United fans need to remember that, for Mourinho, this may be his biggest job to date, but it is still just another in the line of big jobs he has already undertaken and doesn’t necessarily mean he is at the end of his nomadic wanderings. (more…)

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It has been another successful weekend for Manchester.

City, in particular, looked mightily impressive against Stoke and United managed to keep the back door shut against Liverpool.

Despite Mourinho being criticised, totally ridiculously, for Liverpool’s inability to score, a draw is still a good result at Anfield.

Certain pundits, such as the idiot Garth Crooks at the BBC, thought United should have attacked Liverpool and tried to win the game, a tactic which could easily have gone pear-shaped and resulted in the first loss of the season. No, José got it spot on and, had Lukaku not shot straight at Mignolet when clean through, he could have been celebrating another one of his famous smash-and-grab acts. (more…)

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Regular readers could be forgiven for thinking that this has to be the easiest question we have ever posed. Why? Because it has to be the Manchester City midfield based purely on the fact that they have scored more goals than anyone else, and by quite a distance.

Whilst there is an element of truth to this argument, the City midfielders are assisted by the fact that they are currently the best team in the league and also that most of the chances they are creating are being converted into goals, which is a testament to how good their strikers are. (more…)

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In an eagerly anticipated game at Anfield the early Saturday kick-off saw Liverpool face Manchester United. Quite why these games are so eagerly anticipated is beyond the ken of simple folk such as ourselves.

They are often dour affairs with both teams more scared of losing than they are motivated by winning.

At least Liverpool did try to win the game but Manchester United, who had ONE shot on target throughout the ninety minutes, should be kicking themselves for not taking a more attacking approach. (more…)

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In our last article we compared the records of the top six strikers expected to get the goals in the Premier League and today it’s the turn of the players at the other end of the pitch. The ones who are expected, (in some cases it is hope rather than expectation), to save the club from dropping points and occasionally winning them some.

It has been said that a good goalkeeper can be worth up to 15 points per season. This is allowing for the fact that he may be the saviour of the team in many close games where 1-0 or 2-1 for example, remains the score at the end thanks to the keeper, or a draw remains a draw purely because of saves he has made. (more…)

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There are many articles written about the top strikers where they are dissected, compared, praised and criticised in equal measure. Many of the scribes who pen these words of wisdom are trying to convince a footballing public that they have them down to a tee.

They want us to think that they have described them in such depth that we now know everything there is to know about them and can make an informed deduction as to who is the better of them. (more…)

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Now that normal service is about to be resumed in the Premier League, at least for a month until the next set of ridiculous international fixtures are played, the clubs can begin to count the cost of releasing their top players to play in these games.

Sometimes meaningless, sometimes meaningful, it is always a surprise, particularly when the season has already started, to see how willing the teams are to release their players and how inconsiderate the international coaches are. (more…)