Arsenal 0-0 Manchester City: Third all but secured amidst the yawns

Apart from it winning the hypothetical, unofficial award for most boring Arsenal game of the season there isn’t much to say about yesterday’s 0-0 draw with Manchester City.

Both defences ruled and it made for an dour affair, in complete contrast to the hyperactive attacking duel that I had expected pre-game. A lot of that had to do with a slight injury keeping boo-boy Emmanuel Adebayor from the City line-up and although his arrival on the hour-mark lifted the intensity slightly, neither side went seriously close to scoring.

Pre-game I was half-expecting us to lose but Roberto Mancini’s overly conservative tactics meant that was never a possibility. For a team who had so much to play for I was extremely surprised by City’s attacking endeavour, particularly against an Arsenal team missing so many key players.

The best thing that can be said about the game and indeed the result is that the draw coupled with Tottenham’s loss to Manchester United, all but ensures that we will finish in third place this season. That means a one-place improvement on last season and the avoidance of a potentially tricky post-World Cup Champions League qualifier, certainly nothing to be laughed at.

The finish, combined with the fact that a few of our key players will not be featuring in South Africa, should see us start next season very strongly. The likes of Thomas Vermaelen, Andrey Arshavin, Tomas Rosicky will all be absent from World Cup action over June and July and should provide some real drive for the other lads on day one of the 2010/11 campaign.

Besides that, there’s nothing much more to say on what was quite simply a horrible day of football. Here’s hoping Blackburn away *vomits in his own mouth* will be better.

Thoughts?

Have your say on Arsenal’s 0-0 draw with Manchester City by leaving a comment.

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19 Responses to “Arsenal 0-0 Manchester City: Third all but secured amidst the yawns”

  1. nigelp
    April 26, 2010 at 6:51 pm #

    Not a great game yesterday. Although, by the time Vieira left Arsenal, I was far from being his biggest fan, it was still good to see him again – and even better to see that Wenger got it right not re-signing him. I say that – with our current injury situation, there are far worse signings he could have made – but Diaby had him in his pocket all game and Paddy is nothing like the player he once was. Still got nervous every time the ball was anywhere near Fabianski, but he didnt do much wrong. I thought Silvestre had his best ever game for us and Solly was as solid as ever, but that has to be tempered with the fact that City never looked like they really wanted to score.

  2. nigelp
    April 26, 2010 at 6:52 pm #

    Yes i knew that many people have said these before but yet our coach has not even shown an interest or have a thought about it, That was 1999 Fifa World U21 when i first saw iker casillas for Spain and Ronaldinho for Brazil in Nigeria for the World cup. These two players have gone to be great players and goalkeeper for their respective countries and the football World in gereral. Now there is this young Goalkeeper from the new generation a very good goalkeeper and i think we should go for him and make him an offer he will never turn down. J. Hart is a better goalkeeper to what we have and i think Mr Wenger should go for him and please don’t use Almunia or Fanbiaski! for next season. Infact we should let them go for free and pay City little money for J. Hart we and City are in good relationship am sure they will do a deal. I have said my opinion and he who has ears let him listen and do the right thing at the right time when is still day time. Am certain if J. Hart stay in Birmingham City for next season then we will never be able to buy him for the fees he will command. I think he is the best in the league and only few people could argue it.

  3. christian
    April 26, 2010 at 6:53 pm #

    It’s my belief that we have a paltry transfer budget whilst the new stadium is being funded. This clearly leaves us unable to compete financially with Chelsea, Man Utd, Man City and even the likes of Liverpool for the bigger names. Not to put too fine a point on it we’re up brown stuff creak without a paddle. However, as I see it, the board and/or Wenger know all to well that to admit as much would not only see hordes of Arsenal season ticket holders vote with their feet but also potential new signings of the Arshavin variety seriously think twice before signing for us. (Arshavin has already gone very public with his views that Arsenal need to strengthen the squad – and he’s not wrong). The fall guys in all of this, as usual, are the supporters. Being kept in the dark with nearly nearly tippy tappy no trophies football is gradually beginning to lose it’s novelty and many people – myself included are thinking twice about next year’s season ticket. I love and always will love Arsenal till the day I die, but I will not be taken for a fool by the club I have invested what must be easily a five figure sum during my time. I want answers, but untill the stadium is paid for I don’t expect to get any. Neither do I see us buying the quality players we need or indeed anything resembling a trophy ever coming our way with the status as it is. You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time – etc etc. Investment is needed and it’s needed NOW. But don’t hold your breath folks.

  4. dako
    April 26, 2010 at 6:54 pm #

    It appears that in the minds of our players the campaign ended when Lionel Messi knocked us out of the Champions League.

    Since that hiding Arsenal have been about as much use as a one-legged man at an arse-kicking contest. We have been diabolical.

    I’ve the heard the term ‘European hang-over’ before, well let’s just say that must have been one hell of a piss-up!

    After so much promise the way the season has ended has been very, very disappointing. Whilst we are ‘pot-less’ again I think maybe a little perspective is due.

    Let me start by saying that I do not believe that finishing (nearly there) third in the Premiership is a brilliant achievement. To be fair, third place (nearly there) is for losers.

    You just don’t win trophies for coming third (nearly there) do you?

    But cast your mind back to last summer. By rights, according to ‘experts’ and many others (including some Gooners) Arsenal shouldn’t be where we are right now in the league table.

    We should be where Liverpool are.

    Arsenal wasn’t expected to even compete for the Champions League places, let alone the title, so are things really that bad?

    If you believed everything you read, heard or saw in the summer of 2009 then Manchester United, Chelsea, Spurs, Manchester City, Liverpool and even Aston Villa should be above us right now.

    How many of those mentioned actually are?

    The truth is Arsenal are not that far away from becoming the best team in England. By far too. We are the nearly men and that has to be addressed. I think it will be.

    Wenger could have strengthened in January but he didn’t. Maybe that is what cost us winning the title this season maybe it isn’t. What I really feel though is Arsene is ready to spend this summer.

    He appears to be hinting at making some signings and while I know we have heard it all in the past I genuinely believe he will strengthen our squad with quality. He needs too, and I reckon he knows that now.

    The problem is the likes of those mentioned above will add to their squads making our future tasks even harder. From next season the Premiership will not be a top-four, it will be a top-seven.

    I believed that Arsenal would win the title this campaign, I said it last August. I was wrong but so are those who doubted we would even make the Champions League for next season.

    So while the season has ended on a disappointing note maybe it hasn’t been that bad. As I’ve said, third isn’t something to shout about but it’s better than most expected.

    A title-challenge is the least I’d expect from Arsenal and until a couple of games ago that is what we had.

    Our challenge ended prematurely this year but if Wenger makes the right signings this summer then I’ll go out and predict that Arsenal will be Champions next season again even if most will predict the usual doom and gloom that we won’t even finish in the top-four.

  5. billi
    April 26, 2010 at 6:57 pm #

    totally agree, maybe spring-tiredness?
    third place is secure?, then it would have been enough what they have done on last saturday, so what?
    I don’t watch the table so much, I would have thought they have to win one game further to be save for cl, it’s not the worst 😉

  6. Lewis
    April 26, 2010 at 7:38 pm #

    A very dismal performance yesterday. Citeh were poor and with a lot of attacking options in their team did nothing. Fabianski’s prayers must have been answered. Altough to be fair I thought and Campbell and at times Silvestre did a very good job. So we passed the ball to death. Nobody able to shoot and the bad old walk the ball into the net approach has crept into the game. Another strange selection from Wenger. Why not use the game to see how Nick and VanP can play together. We did nothing until Nick came on to make space for VP. The Terrifiing Theo was once again just dominating the game and justifuing his £60k a week wage. Errr..sorry that last sentence was pure fantasy. Another anonymous performance from old Twinkletoes! Nasri had a lot of the ball but is inconsistent. He is not as bad as Hleb. Hleb scored 6 goals or something like that in 3 seasons. Nasri has shown he has the ability to score – he just needs to be reminded. Oh! Isnt that what Wenger and the increasingly immobile Pat Rice should be doing? Is Pat dead and has been mumified to be wheeled out for each game so that Wenger doesnt have to get another coach with some new ideas? Lastly what was that fool Eboue doing at the end. After his African love-in with Adebayor, Toure and Song he then decides to do a lap of honour, with all his of his team mates gone, around the pitch and throws his shirt into the crowd. The stadium was emptying to people swearing their heads off at such a crap performance and this guy was acting as if we had just clinched the title. Asides from diving to get us a free kick all he did was lay-off poor back-passes. The guy is a class 1 lunatic.

  7. amar
    April 26, 2010 at 8:11 pm #

    If memory serves the last time we lost a match when we had our first choice 11 out was the 06 CL final. RVP alone was a huge loss to us this year let alone all the others.
    Chelsea can attest to what he did to them last season.
    Some you win some you lose but a threadbare squad can compete on 4 fronts and pushing for the cups may have cost us the CL spot.
    AW’s job has been very difficult and he has taken the flak for the board who keep the keys to the vault but dont allow him access regardless of what they say.

    There can be no doubt however that he will be given serious bucks to spend this summer because if they dont give him the readies they know that they lose him.
    It is that simple.

    I’m am pretty sure that he is sick of all the criticism from fans and media when he isnt allowed spend a fraction of the money that he has helped make for the club.
    We profitted 30 mil on transfers last summer. You think Wenger wouldnt like a David Villa or karim Benzema in his side? Of course he fucking would. He just doesnt have the option and having to bring the club in line with the new UEFA’s financial rules havent helped even though we are the benchmark in the sport.

    Bring on the summer and since it is a world cup year the business will be done early.

    This time next year Man City and Chelsea will be headed into court with UEFA over CL admission being denied and everybody will be heaping praise on our set up conveniently forgetting the sacrifices that were made and the intense criticism levelled suffered by AW to achieve it.

    You cant have it every fuckin way.

    Look at Liverpool. Bought Torres for monster money pay 6 figure sums for wages and now they are fucked and I do mean proper fucked. They are never getting back in the CL.

    Those who complain need a better overview beyond their own chilish tantrums. Football is huge business now and there is more at stake than trophies. The next five years will bring a fucking cull the like of which has never been seen before. Debt and UEFA are going burn football in England and after the dust has settled we will see who is on fucking top.

    Arsenal

  8. Will O'Doherty
    April 26, 2010 at 8:30 pm #

    Oh dear. The wonders of timing. Quotes emerged from the boss last week that perhaps don’t quite chime with the feelings of many at the moment. “This year I feel we have appeased our fans a lot. We have always shown great attitude, a great response when needed.” What odds the interview that begat those words took place before the Spurs and Wigan games? Since then the wheels have come off a tad, haven’t they? Actually, to continue the car analogy, we’re left feeling we’ve been sold a bit of a lemon: it looks sleek and has excellent poke, but the exhaust can fall off when you go over a speed hump.

    Personally, I still love the car. And I don’t see why a few tweaks won’t see it running like a dream for the foreseeable.

    I do not share the same anger or desolation as many of the people contributing to this site and others. I don’t think the entire squad should be taken out back and shot. I find it hard to believe that people still bemoan Nicklas Bendtner as if he were the second coming of Chris Kiwomya; the fella has 9 goals in 12, many coming in high pressure situations. He produced a peach of a ball to set up an excellent Walcott finish v Barcelona. Yes, a Walcott finish. Anyone who was surprised that Theo could do that is either not watching or is desperately looking to scapegoat someone. His decision making leaves a lot to be desired, his crossing is pants, but the boy can run and the boy can finish, and those abilities are reason enough not to discard him. Alex Song, Thomas Vermaelen and Cesc Fabregas have been sensational. Gallas was superb when available.

    The rest of the squad produced in fits and bursts, and it needs adding to in a serious way – this is no time for 19 year old projects or sub-£1 million cast-offs – but the way some of you lot have been going on you’d think we were Liverpool, or any of the other 88 clubs sitting beneath us in the league.

    While many of you might not want to accept it, the club has achieved something that could be more vital to us than a trophy. While Manchester United operate with a staggering debt looming over them that seemingly requires perennial success, Liverpool writhe about like a slapper on a Saturday night looking for someone to buy her a drink, and Chelsea and City live or die on the whim of benefactors, our club managed to maintain a level of competition that has given us Champions’ League football and two title challenges while also building a massive cash cow called the Emirates Stadium. They paid off over a third of their debt in one year. They are beginning to make huge amounts of money. I agree that it’s a total waste if it’s not used making the club as strong as possible and giving the fans what they want, but give them a chance. Damn them for not doing so already if you like, but at least accept that they would have done it while damaging the club’s long-term financial position. Acknowledge the bigger picture even if you want to be critical.

    Watching the disgrace at Wigan was painful viewing and I would not suggest that it was in any way good enough. Nor, I am sure would the manager. In the last few weeks he has been as forward in talking about the need to change things and bring in new players as I can remember him being. If he fails to bring in a keeper, or resolve the ridiculous injury problems we have then fine, he is fair game, but right now, a lot of you sound like United fans biting the hand that feeds them.

    Five years without a trophy is a long time for a club like ours. But there are two caveats to that point. First, it’s not like this club hasn’t moved forward massively in other departments. Second, we’re in an age where other clubs with similar histories, like Villa, Spurs and Everton, have been feeding off scraps thrown from the table we have sat squarely at for a decade. The anger over the long arduous wait (approximately a quarter of the time Liverpool fans have had) is based on the period of excellence that preceded it. That wasn’t down to Bruce Rioch, George Graham, David Dein, Peter Hill Wood or Joe Bloggs ten rows back. The way some of us whine suggests we’re unaware of the club’s history pre-Wenger. Before Anfield in 1989, we had to wait 18 years to win the league!

    I truly want to see this club strengthened, for the cracks to be filled, the days of projects and development above all else to be brought to an end. But I am not so blind as to suggest this club does not possess a very strong hand, or has the heritage of excellence that some, many, appear to believe. We all have reasons to be bitterly disappointed, but vitriolic? Leave it for the rest, this club’s a little too classy for it.

  9. Jebo
    April 26, 2010 at 9:16 pm #

    Its not bad on Saturday, but am amazed that you started talking about next season….(of course you said same last year)…..third is not enough for arsenal, specialy after wenger said he could win 2 silverwares at the begning of the season…. not impressive!!

  10. Ianinja
    April 26, 2010 at 9:17 pm #

    I shot the sheriff but I didn’t shoot no deputy….

  11. Jebo
    April 26, 2010 at 9:19 pm #

    ahahaha….i loved it laninja!!…”i shot the shriff…”

    I like toure and he spoke the truth on his interview here…

    ck it out

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/leagues/premierleague/mancity/7624681/Kolo-Toure-blames-Arsenal-departure-on-breakdown-in-relationship-with-William-Gallas.html

  12. shambogunner
    April 26, 2010 at 10:59 pm #

    @christian,
    really enjoyed your honest post.
    @jebo,
    that just highlighted wengers lack of man management even more for me. add that to the treatment of senderos and it suggests his disconnection from the fans may be on a par with his disconnection from the players.
    @ice hammer from yesterday,
    ice my friend theres not much i can tell you about women,met my wife when i was 15 and after 11 years im still none the wiser…..but in relation to jobs around the house i have found if you do a job really half assed and wrong,you wont be asked to do it again….they have standards that way!!
    try dying her brand new favourite top in the next wash, worked for me!!

  13. shambogunner
    April 26, 2010 at 11:02 pm #

    by the way i said i met my wife at 15,we didnt marry till we were 24…..just incase you all had me down as a hillbillie.

  14. Johnno
    April 27, 2010 at 12:26 am #

    A story on Goal.com today reports that Arsenal are paying Fabregas £110.000 per week and handed him a £3 million payment to effectively back date his pay rise by two years.

    This was in an attempt to keep the player at Arsenal and to fight off interest from Barcelona.

    If this report is true it could be one of the reasons why we haven’t seen much activity in the transfer market of late.

  15. shambogunner
    April 27, 2010 at 7:01 am #

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9kQl-nGCjzU&feature=related
    hey all this is a nice insight into some of the players….kinda makes you forget bout the last few weeks aswel.

  16. shambogunner
    April 27, 2010 at 7:14 am #

    better again is this one

  17. Andrew Weber
    April 27, 2010 at 8:39 am #

    @ Johnno – It sounds like a feasible story but surely one £3 million payment isn’t going to stop our ability to participate in the transfer market. I think things are a little more complicated than that but it does show our fierce desire to keep hold of Fabregas and I think that’s a good thing.

  18. dave m
    April 27, 2010 at 1:20 pm #

    AND, while our beloved Gooners are firing blanks there’s this on the Guardian football blog …

    Many of us will have endured a moment, perhaps many moments, in our time as football fans when we are watching our side slip to ignominious defeat and we mutter, sotto voce, at the opposition: “OK, enough now, you’ve won the bloody game, give us a break.”

    Chelsea don’t give anyone a break. The second top-flight side since 1945 to score seven or more goals three times in the same season (as well as three sevens they’ve scored six fours and three fives). 4-0 up with 10 minutes to play they refused simply to see out the closing stages and continued to tear into Stoke. Sure, goal difference may be key this season, but that’s just mean.

  19. fillo
    April 30, 2010 at 4:46 am #

    maybe just maybe hahaha. we could win the league if both united and chelsea go into administration

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