Arsenal 4-1 Portsmouth: The Premier League’s in-form team end the year on a high note

Arsenal ended 2009 with a 4-1 win over Portsmouth and in a superb position to challenge for the Premier League title in 2010.

Our boys are in third place on the table, just four points behind table-toppers Chelsea with a game in hand – a position almost every Arsenal supporter would have taken before the start of the season. They’ve scored a record 51 goals in 19 games, have a competition-high goal-difference of +30 and are currently the in-form team in England with five wins and a draw in the last six matches.

The win over Pompey was as straightforward a game as Arsenal have had this season.

At 2-0 up at half-time through Eduardo’s deflected free-kick and Samir Nasri’s well worked goal, the game was all but over at half-time. Abou Diaby once again ran riot in the first half, more than making up for the absence of Cesc Fabregas, while Aaron Ramsey and Alex Song’s partnership ensured the physical battle was won.

The second half floated by without much fuss before Ramsey scored the game’s outstanding goal – dispossessing one Portsmouth midfielder, sidestepping another and slamming home with his left peg.

Pompey pulled one back shortly after but the cruise at the Park was complete when Arsenal’s most consistent performer of the season, Song, scored his first goal of the campaign. Cheers of “We’ve only got one Song!” echoed from the away support as the Cameroonian scampered forward in characteristic fashion to head home Nasri’s cross and add the cherry on top of an excellent result.

While Ramsey may have got the official Man of the Match for his all-round display and excellent goal virtually every member of the team put in a good performance. Diaby was superb while the game was still hot, Vermaen was dominant at the back while Song did what he seems to do every week – make the midfield his own. Eduardo looked sharper and made some good chances, Nasri was clever in possession while Bacary Sagna and Armand Traore were typically bullish at the back.

In short, the Pompey game was a good representation of how far these players have come since the end of last year. The exciting thought lies with how much further they’ll have gone by the end of the next.

Well done boys!

Have your say on Arsenal’s win over Portsmouth by leaving a comment.

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16 Responses to “Arsenal 4-1 Portsmouth: The Premier League’s in-form team end the year on a high note”

  1. Sola Bamigboye
    December 31, 2009 at 5:33 pm #

    what else can one say about these boys (let ’em continue to be called boys as long as dey r churning out d results)….. its now dat some skepticcs r begining 2 c wot AW has been seeing & saying about his boyz…….. I guess this is there season as they have now matured and maturing to take on the physical bullies in the league.
    Bigg’up boys….

  2. TheSKAGooner
    December 31, 2009 at 5:36 pm #

    A most excellent result. Pompey can be a tricky place to play sometimes, and it would have been easy to have a slip up. But the lads came good, showed some steel when needed and played some wonderful Arsenal football. I think we had close to 2+ minutes straight of passing and possession just before Song’s goal at the end and Dudu’s back-cut pass to Ramsey, which was then scooted on to Nasri was just beautiful.

    Song continues his ascent. Game after game he’s leaving his mark on this side and I don’t have any doubts he’ll be our DM for years to come. He’s got to be running a close second to Cesc for Arsenal POY honors.

    Diaby is growing in confidence. It’s clear that the talent and understanding of the game are finally matching up for him. He’s comfortable on the ball, moving well off the ball and really getting a boot stuck in as needed. He really acts as a co-DM at times, which will give our attack and counter-attacks all the more room and opportunity to burst forward.

    Ramsey will make Arsene’s life difficult for the rest of the season in giving him the headache of “How can I not put this lad on the pitch?” If we get another couple performances like that out of him while Cesc is out (hopefully for only the newly reported 10 days or so), I see a midfield of Cesc/Ramsey/Diaby to make the run throughout January while Song is away to Africa. Even if Ramsey doesn’t start in the midfield that much, clearly he’s as close to a first team regular without actually being a first team regular as anyone could ever hope to be. He’s ready.

    I thought Traore put in another nice performance. The lad’s got tons of pace and he seems to keep his crosses well low to the ground. He’s still learning and Clichy/Gibbs are still ahead of him, but it’s much less of a sweat with them out if Traore can continue along this path of development.

    We’ve got a run of matches early and mid-January that should allow us to play a side with Ramsey, Diaby, Traore and the like without too much difficulty. True, the effort and focus need to be there, and they can’t take recent form for granted. But the fixture list is pretty kind to us in the immediate future and we should come into the crucible of Villa/United/Chelsea/Liverpool loaded for bear with just about everyone back and healthy (hopefully, and discounting van Persie and Djourou).

  3. harsen
    December 31, 2009 at 6:07 pm #

    yeah its now unto all those who think arsenal isnt acup serious contender-including fergiee,wait when we go past them.

  4. harsen
    December 31, 2009 at 6:10 pm #

    yeah its now unto all those who think arsenal isnt acup serious contender-including fergiee,wait when we go past them .well done our boyz.

  5. Hey Nonny Mouse
    December 31, 2009 at 6:32 pm #

    Without our two star players and leading scorers we go to Portsmouth and win 4-1. We must be doing something right.
    Basically I agree with all comments by TheSKAGooner up there. Diaby’s becoming a very difficult player to contain. It’s fantastic timing as we need someone else to step up now we’re into mid season. I like our position, just a whisker off the pace. No one thinks we can win it, (even me) it’s perfect.
    Really and for no particular reason I just wanted to say that my favourite moment of the season so far is Denny’s goal against Everton – our very first league goal of the season in our first match. I just loved the way he got hold of it and the nutty celebration after. Currrmon the Arsenal!!!

  6. Eddee
    December 31, 2009 at 6:45 pm #

    Yeah, that’s what any Real Gunner would say after the demolition of Portmouth.
    The writing has been on the wall for at least 50 years and counting, the odds didnt favour Pompey at all. The pace of Belhadj(even though he eventually got a goal) was no match for the eccentric Song. The selfishness of Boateng(it was to our advantage anyway) worsened the already bad situation. Kudo’s to our boys they’ve shown some maturity(physically) it was fun seen the troublesome Nasri hussle for the boy from his opponents like his life depended on it.
    The sacking Gary Megson isnt gonna help either coz they are gonna pass through the litmus test twice in a fortnight. GOD help them. What do you think is the appropriate scoreline to punish Bolton’s disloyalty to their Manager?

  7. domnic karega[kenya]
    December 31, 2009 at 8:02 pm #

    at first i had my doubts owing to pompeys physicality especially against liverpool. cescs absence also worsened my fears,but after the first 45 mins. i saw a great potentiality and consistency in my team…ramsey made it clear that i had no raesons to worry,his confidence in the game was jst enough 4 me..at this pace its hard to lose but above all its hard 4 any team meeting arsenal..lets keep the fire burning..cheers to the premier league favorites

  8. liam
    December 31, 2009 at 10:04 pm #

    this is taken from porstsmouth forum:

    “Interesting game last night for all sorts of reasons. We played well for 20 mins, but then it was all down hill. Frankly Arsenal were a joy to watch, so much more than MUFC when they came here a few weeks ago & cheated and argued for 90 mins. Hope Arsenal go on to win the title. As for us, I agree with Grant, we can still stay up but only of course if we don’t go into administration. ”

    enough said.

  9. theicehammer
    December 31, 2009 at 10:50 pm #

    Happy new year all, just heard that Diaby has put pen to paper on new long term deal. Wenger is wise to secure the deal long term because as i said two weeks ago the bigger boys from Spain will come sniffing for that kind of talent especially as it is still potential, and im sure pay more.
    I didn’t get to watch any football the last couple days so have seen no performances. Good idea where my ammers are concerned although i expected the loss but it is even worse to see we have yet still more injuries. As for yr boys i hear they played very well. Traore seems to have played very well from what i have read as i said he would earlier this season. Still want to swap him for Parker, Shambo…. the injured Parker that is. Interesting to see Craig Eastmond getting a few minutes from off the bench. I use to watch him during 20006 and knew he had potential. He is not a player to grab the headlines a bit like Guilberto Silver does the simple very well. Whats up with Walcott, did e play, how did the main strikers perform. Was my man Diaby as good as before. Can anyone remameber the blogger who did not rate Diaby, get im back on. Dont drink and drive but have a good one tonight.

  10. theicehammer
    December 31, 2009 at 11:06 pm #

    liam, nice to read an honnest account and believe it or not, i still think yr boys will finish higher up the table than us at upton park although you are worse off with Grant. Play up Pompy.

  11. theicehammer
    December 31, 2009 at 11:22 pm #

    POMPEY

  12. Bruce in Atlanta
    January 1, 2010 at 12:29 am #

    2009 was a bit of a mixed bag for the Arsenal, but it certainly ended well – and 2010’s looking good!

    Happy New Year all – C’MON ARSENAL!

  13. georgetown gooner
    January 1, 2010 at 12:30 am #

    song was immense again,3 more points on the board and a no nonsense diplay from the lads yes december has been a very good month for the arsenal.just one concern arshavin doesn,t seem happy at the moment he didn,t even celebrate when we scored the fourth goal i dont know whats wrong but shava needs to sort himself out lively as he is one of our most experienced players.

  14. rocknrolljesus1
    January 2, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

    great game… everyone expected that arsenal would score a lot of goals, but it showed again that we consided a goal. we have to fix the hole in defense, because we conside a goal a lot of times, and when we will play in CL the teams will be world class and scoring goals agains them will be harder, but considing goals will be easy… senderos can leave, he is not what we need. wilshere should go on loan for expirience. more players probably won’t leave. i would love to see vela leave, because he is not a world class talent (or he should go on loan asswell).

    to buy list:
    1. STRIKER:
    gignac- not good enought (few goals this season).
    huntelaar- unavaileble in CL and didn’t prove him self in a big club.
    c.cole- injured.
    pavlyuchenko- not good enought.
    bellamy- great, pacefull, quick, expirienced, availeble for CL, a fighter like rooney. but he will cost a lot.
    loic remy- not enought goals in the french league… imagine him in the premiership or CL. not good enough.
    chamakh- won’t leave bordeaux in the winter.
    agbonlahor- quick, availeble for CL, great form, english.
    dzeko- too expensive and not availeble in the CL.

    my candidates:
    darren bent- english, availeble for CL, in great form, a lot of goals, not so expensive.
    jermaine defoe- the same, but he will cost more.

    MIDFIELDER: we should consider someone new in the mid. we have injured players and song and eboue left for africa.

    parker- english, great, expirieced, availeble for CL.
    noble- good, english, but we should have someone for the defensive midfield.
    felipe melo- cheaper then in the summer. plays great for brazil, bad for juve. wenger brings out the best of players, so we should bring him to the emirates.

    i would preffer inler over matuidi.

    DEFENDER: Senderos out, eboue in africa, djourou out for the season.

    subotic, zapata, sakho- long term player, availeble for CL.
    richards- on his way out of city, english, availeble for CL, plays right back asswell.

    GOALKEEPER: probably will come in the summer.

    green, given, hart- i preffer given and green.

  15. theicehammer
    January 3, 2010 at 9:57 pm #

    happy new year to andy and all. Big game today for us both. Cant see you Gooners getting anything as we have your number. Realistic score 1-3.

  16. Johan Akesson
    January 4, 2010 at 7:35 am #

    Yeah, I´m really impressed by the boys and Song is one of my absolute favourite players at the moment. The sight for the play and his physical qualities. The future looks real bright and I´m looking forward seeing Fabregas lifting the trophy in May!

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